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    Luminant's Martin Lake Must Stop Dumping Coal Ash Into Unlined Ponds, EPA Says

    January 26, 2023 - Targeted News Service


      WASHINGTON, Jan. 26 (TNSgov) -- The Sierra Club posted the following news release on Jan. 25, 2023:

      In a victory for communities around the country and a positive step toward clean water for all, EPA announced utilities in several states, including Luminant's Martin Lake coal-fired power plant near Tatum, Texas, can no longer dump toxic coal ash waste into unlined ponds, denying utilities' requests to continue the harmful and irresponsible practice.

      The Obama administration established safeguards against coal ash, but these measures were ignored by the Trump administration and communities across the country have continued to suffer from the harmful effects of coal ash waste. A number of utilities - including Luminant - requested permission to continue sending toxic waste into unlined ponds for years to come, but today, President Biden's EPA is taking action to protect our communities by denying these requests.

      Coal ash, which is produced from burning coal in coal-fired power plants, poses numerous threats to human health and the environment. Chemicals and heavy metals such as arsenic, lead, and mercury can leach from unlined ponds to contaminate ground and surface water, and may cause cancer, developmental delays, birth defects in people who consume these toxins.

      All three groundwater monitoring wells at Martin Lake's coal ash disposal sites show exceedances of toxic and heavy metals such as arsenic, beryllium, boron, cadmium, cobalt, lead, lithium, manganese, mercury, nickel, strontium, and sulfate. The plant is located adjacent to a popular fishing lake, and near Martin Creek Lake State Park.

      If finalized as proposed, today's announcement would require Martin Lake to stop dumping coal ash into unlined ponds. EPA's decision will be available for public comment until March 10, 2023.

      In response, Emma Pabst, Texas Campaign Representative for Sierra Club's Beyond Coal Campaign released the following statement:

      "We support EPA's efforts to finally clean up harmful coal ash pollution. For too long, massive polluters like Luminant's Martin Lake plant have gotten away with spewing thousands of tons of pollution into our air and water. It's time for those sources to do their fair share."

      * * *

      Original text here:


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