EPA Reveals More High-Hazard Coal-Ash Sites

February 10, 2010
Oak Ridge - Y-12 Filled Coal Ash Pond. Photo courtesy US DOE.

EPA has published plans submitted by electric utilities to improve safety at 22 coal-ash storage facilities that had been rated "high hazard." It was an ongoing effort by EPA for disclosure in an area where a powerful coalition of utilities and government agencies had been pushing for secrecy.

Disclosure of the 22 plans will allow local, state, and national environmental reporters to track implementation of the plans. If they choose.

A Dec. 2008 coal ash spill at TVA's Kingston plant dumped millions of cubic yards of dangerous sludge downstream.

At the same time, EPA released the identities of some 40 more — previously undisclosed — scary ash impoundments. Engineering assessments of these sites showed they have "'high' or 'significant' potential to cause loss of human life, environmental damage, or damage to infrastructure," according to Environment News Service.