Who Wants Some Coal Ash? Tennessee's Mess Getting Shipped Out of State
Photo via NY Times
Ooh me, pick me! I want a slew of toxic coal ash from Tennessee's notorious spill imported into my backyard! Too bad I don't live in Georgia or Alabama, the two lucky states so far selected to receive the fallout from the Tennesse Valley Authority's famous environmental catastrophe.According to the NRDC, Tennessee has already started getting rid of the giant mess it made when a couple million cubic yards of coal ash broke through a dike and spilled out accross the land last December.
From the NRDC:
The Tennessee Valley Authority is shipping some of the 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash sludge that spilled out of its retention pond at the Kingston TVA coal-fired power plant, polluting the Emery River and contaminating downstream, in Roane County last December to landfills in other states.
And the lucky recipients?
1,000 tons of dried sludge has been sent by train to Taylor County, east of Columbus, Georgia and another load has gone to Perry County, Alabama, between Tuscalossa and Montgomery.
Other states that might get in on the toxic ash sharin' action haven't been named yet, and further details are scarce. The hushed, hurried shipment may have been put on the fast track due to the fact that the EPA is currently reviewing whether or not coal ash should be regarded as a hazardous substance, which might make Tennessee's still-sizable mess all the more difficult to clear out.
And at least the states receiving the sludge will be better equipped to contain the stuff, right? Well . . .
. . . all that contaminated coal ash from the Tennessee spill now headed to other states will be subject to standards that are weaker than those of the typical landfill handling house-hold waste.
So you're telling me there's a chance--maybe if those states mishandle the coal ash and it goes spilling out all over the place again (as it already has in Alabama just earlier this year), I'll finally get my shot at having the toxic, arsenic intensive good stuff up my way.