The two-year anniversary of the coal ash spill and resulting environmental disaster at TVA’s Kingston, Tenn. Power Plant has just passed. In the early morning hours of December 22, 2008, a coal ash impoundment at the Kingston facility collapsed and spilled more than 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash sludge into the Emory River and surrounding properties. Clean-up costs for the spill are expected to exceed $1.2 billion.
Given the magnitude of this disaster, Kingston residents were hopeful that TVA would do everything possible to improve its operating practices. But in mid-December TVA acknowledged that a new gypsum pond at the Kingston Plant is leaking through one of its side walls. Gypsum is a limestone product resulting from pollution-scrubbers that TVA uses at the facility.
TVA had a larger gypsum pond leak in early 2009 at its Widows Creek Fossil Plant. In response to the problems with its ash and gypsum ponds, TVA reportedly plans to phase out wet storage of all coal ash and residues in the next decade. Whether TVA carries through with its promises remains to be seen. In the meantime though, residents and businesses located near the TVA Kingston Plant have good reason to be skeptical. If you would like more information on this matter, please contact David Byrne at 800-898-2034 or by email at David.Byrne@beasleyallen.com.
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