earth justice

Mountaintop Mining Case Could Head to Supreme Court

by kespeland on August 28, 2009

A case involving four mountaintop mining permits could be headed for the U.S. Supreme Court. Attorneys for Earth Justice want the court to revoke the permits because they claim they were improperly issued and allowed major environmental damage to take place.  Attorney Steve Roady says a favorable ruling from the high court could call the entire permit program into question.

“We do think this case is of national importance, it seems to us it would be very important for the court to step in this case, because the case involves dramatic levels of destruction in Appalachia to headwater streams that are being buried by these mountaintop mining operations,” Roady said.

The Army Corps of Engineers issues permits for mining operations that affect aquatic environments.  Under the Clean Water Act, it must determine whether a mining operation will have adverse impacts.  But Roady says 13 miles of streams were buried as a result of the issuance of these permits.  The Corps has said it acted lawfully, and mining companies are required to do some environmental restoration.

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Coal Ash Disaster Prompts New Scrutiny

by kespeland February 26, 2009

Thick black sludge buried nearly 300 acres in the December 2008 coal ash spill at a Tennessee power plant. And the disaster left many asking how it could have happened. Now, as U.S. lawmakers push for answers, WFPL’s Kristin Espeland finds out who’s watching coal ash in Kentucky.

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Massive Toxic Sludge Spill Goops Up Eastern TN

by kespeland December 23, 2008

Nearly 22 million tons of coal ash have spilled into tributaries of the Tennessee River and onto hundreds of surrounding acres.

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EPA Signs Off On Mountaintop Removal Rule

by kespeland December 3, 2008

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has signed off on a controversial rule concerning mountaintop removal mining. The new rule would allow mining companies to place mining debris in streams.

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Group Sues EPA Over PVC Plant Emissions

by kespeland October 27, 2008

A nonprofit group says it wants the Environmental Protection Agency to get moving on efforts to tighten pollution standards for PVC manufacturing plants.

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