Add your voice to the push for strong coal ash disposal standards | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

Add your voice to the push for strong coal ash disposal standards

The coal ash pile at Louisville Gas & Electric's Cane Run plant pictured above is located in a residential area and has been the source of toxic ash blowing onto nearby homes. It's one of the concerns being addressed by the KFTC Jefferson County chapter's Air Quality Team.

Kentucky is fifth in the nation is coal ash generation. A 2011 study by Earthjustice found that Kentucky had 43 operating coal ash disposal sites, 21 of which exceed a height of 25 feet or impound more than 500 acre‐feet of ash. Professional engineers did not design 20 of the state’s 43 dams nor did they oversee construction of 27 of them.

For years, KFTC members have been working to eliminate public exposure to toxic coal ash. This includes leakage from coal ash lagoons and the blowing of ash onto neighboring houses.

It’s a major problem in Kentucky because of our unhealthy dependence on burning coal for electricity, with arsenic, cadmium, cobalt, boron among the dangerous chemicals found in pollution from the more than 40 coal ash disposal sites in Kentucky. A 2010 report co-authored by the Kentucky Waterways Alliance found:

“Every day in Kentucky, ponds and landfills leak into our groundwater and rivers, seeping out a slow-motion flood of contamination … every site in Kentucky for which groundwater data was available appears to be leaking. Kentucky is failing to control coal combustion waste contamination.”

Coal ash – our second largest industrial waste stream – also is a national problem. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has the authority to control the treatment and disposal of coal ash, yet has not done so. Federal action to protect public health is needed, especially given the failure of Kentucky officials to do so.

In 2010, KFTC joined other national and local groups in a lawsuit to force EPA to take action. Last October, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the EPA has a mandatory duty to review and finalize coal ash disposal rules proposed in May 2010.

In response to this citizens’ legal victory, EPA agreed to finalize first-ever federal standards for the disposal of coal ash by December 19, 2014. The Obama administration is now giving final review to those safety standards. We don’t yet know how strong those new safety standards will be.

Please join the National Coal Ash Call-In Day – Monday, November 24

We’re joining our national allies to urge KFTC members to participate in National Call-in Day today (or as soon as you can) to push the Obama Administration to release the strongest possible coal ash standards in December.

Contact the White House

√ By phone: 202-456-1111 for the White House comment line
√ By email:

MESSAGE: "I request that President Obama adopt the strongest possible safeguards that truly protect the health and environment of all U.S. communities threatened by coal ash waste.

CLICK HERE for a longer phone / email script with additional background.

Thanks for helping make a difference!

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