Sunday 22 April 2018

Coal Ash (29)

Under the Obama Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency adopted federal protections against the dangers posed by toxic coal ash. That rule requires closure of ash dumps in dangerous locations (including within five feet of groundwater), regular inspection of coal ash ponds, monitoring of groundwater near coal ash sites, closure of leaking ponds, cleanup when contamination is found, safe closure of dumps, and public posting of monitoring and inspection results. Under Administrator Scott Pruitt, the Environmental Protection Agency has proposed to weaken or eliminate the federal safeguards and protections against the dangers posed by coal ash. EPA is holding one public hearing on April 24th. These changes put the health and well-being of communities on the Potomac, James, Susquehanna, Patuxent and many other rivers at risk! Join your local Waterkeepers at the public hearing in Arlington on April 24th: CLICK HERE to register to speak. When: Tuesday, April 24 (9AM–12PM; 1–4PM; 5–8PM) Where: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 300 S Army Navy Drive, Arlington, VA 22202 If you cannot attend, submit your written comments by Monday, April 30th -- CLICK HERE  EPA has proposed to: Allow operators of coal ash ponds and landfills to write their own standards Make cleanup of contamination discretionary (i.e., let polluters do nothing) Eliminate the requirement that leaking ponds install liners or close Give polluters extra time to close ponds and landfills located in unsafe areas and eliminate the strict location prohibitions entirely Allow political appointees, instead of professional engineers, to decide if a cleanup is adequate or even required. Every year, more than 110…
Dec. 4th Public Meeting & Rally on Coal Ash Disposal in Virginia Back in April, Governor McAuliffe put the brakes on issuing coal ash solid waste permits to Dominion for at least a year so the toxic coal ash threats posed at their facilities can be assessed and the full range of disposal solutions explored, including recycling. This assessment will be presented to the State Water Commission on December 4th. Please join us Dec. 4th from 10:00 – noon to hear the results of this finding. The meeting will be located in Virginia State Capitol, House Room 1, 1000 Bank Street, Richmond, Virginia. Remember to bring a state issued ID to gain entry into the Virginia State Capitol. Immediately following the meeting there will be a press event and a Dominion: Move Your Ash rally. RSVP today to receive updates. We need to tell Dominion and Virginia loud and clear that they can’t bury toxic coal ash in leaky ponds at their power plants! https://www.facebook.com/events/1310974965680909/ Water is Life Rally & Concert to Stop Atlantic Coast Pipeline on Dec. 2nd This rally and concert will focus attention on the Virginia Water Control Board hearings coming up in Richmond on December 6, 7, 11 & 12 to decide whether or not to grant water quality certifications for the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley Pipelines. The Rally & Concert on Dec. 2nd and the public hearings represent the last political chance in Virginia to stop these fracked gas pipelines. Help surround Capitol Grounds from 1-2pm to send a…
EPA’s Action to Delay Protections Means Dire Local Impacts & Is Illegal Waterkeepers Chesapeake strongly oppose EPA’s proposal to delay compliance deadlines for the Steam Electric Effluent Limitations and Guidelines (ELG), which became final in November 2015 and went into effect at the beginning of 2016. EPA should immediately reinstate all compliance deadlines for the 2015 ELG rule. EPA should also notify state permitting authorities and power plant utilities that the ELG rule is in effect and must be implemented according to the compliance deadlines outlined in the 2015 rule, which already allow utilities plenty of time to come into compliance. “By allowing toxic pollutants from power plants, such as toxic metals, arsenic, selenium, and lead, into our waterways there will be a tremendous impact on our entire region. Our waterways, communities and children will be irreversibly harmed if EPA delays the compliance deadlines of the ELG rule,” said Betsy Nicholas, Executive Director, Waterkeepers Chesapeake. Prior to being finalized in 2015 these standards had not been updated since 1982, despite the fact that coal-burning power plants and other steam electric power plants are THE largest toxic water polluters in the country, responsible for approximately 30% of all toxic pollution dumped into surface waters by industries regulated under the Clean Water Act. The 1982 rules didn’t place limits on toxic pollutants in power plant discharges. Delaying the new toxic water pollution protections sets us back three and a half decades. The Delay Has Dire Local Impacts In June, the Trump administration…