Pollution Control Board Approves LG&E Coal Ash Settlement

by Erica Peterson on April 18, 2012

Louisville’s Air Pollution Control Board has approved a settlement between Metro Government and Louisville Gas and Electric. The settlement resolves several violations involving coal ash at the company’s Cane Run Power Plant.

Under the agreement, LG&E will pay the Air Pollution Control District $19,500 in penalties and make a $3,000 donation to the district’s Air Quality Trust Fund. Residents near the southwest Louisville plant say coal ash routinely leaves the landfill and contaminates their homes and vehicles.

Plant manager Steve Turner says the plant has implemented some new practices and technologies to try to control the coal ash.

“The commitments that we’ve made in this agreed order reflect LG&E’s corporate commitment to not only be in full environmental compliance, but to also be a good neighbor,” he said.

Kathy Little lives across the street from the landfill. She spoke against the settlement at the public meeting, saying she doesn’t believe it will entice LG&E to change anything about its operation, and her neighborhood still suffers from coal ash pollution.

“Visuals of their own part of the landfill—weren’t they cited for not reporting ash incidents last year?” she asked. “What has happened this year to make you believe that they will do this? Do you have in mind possibly audio video mechanisms in order to get the true story?”

Little says there was another dust violation at the site on Monday that she captured on video. Terri Phelps of the Air Pollution Control District confirmed that LG&E had not reported the incident to the APCD–which they’re required to do if a violation has occurred. The company maintains there was no violation and it was in compliance with all applicable standards during the release.

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