Tuesday, June 30, 2009

EPA Posts List of 44 “High Hazard Potential” Coal Ash Waste Impoundments

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has posted a list of 44 “high hazard potential” impoundments containing coal combustion residuals, commonly referred to as coal ash, at 26 different coal burning electric utility facilities. EPA is releasing this information after interagency coordination with FEMA’s Risk Analysis Division Mitigation Directorate and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Following the failure of an impoundment at the TVA facility in Kingston, Tennessee, in December 2008, EPA has been gathering information on coal combustion residual impoundments from electrical utilities nation wide and conducting on-site evaluations to determine the impoundments’ vulnerabilities. Working closely with other federal agencies and the states, EPA will review the information gathered from this investigation and will require appropriate action at any facility that is found to pose a risk.

The results and analysis of this investigation will be compiled in a report and made available to the public and will help strengthen our ability to protect the American people, which is our foremost and urgent priority. The list of units was compiled from information submitted to EPA by the electric utilities in response to EPA’s March 9, 2009 information request.

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