The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency plans to set federal safeguards for millions of tons of dangerous coal ash waste currently being stored in dry dumps and waste ponds. You can help set EPA on a straight course towards the first ever strong, federally enforceable safeguards for coal ash. And judging from the current proposal, it seems like the EPA can use our help.
Texas leads the nation in coal ash waste production so final rules could have significant impact in keeping Texans safe from toxic waste, blighting our landscape and polluting our groundwater. According to the EPA, if the weaker coal ash option were put in place, coal ash dumps and waste ponds in Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Montana, Ohio, Texas, Virginia and Wyoming will retain their status quo: poorly regulated, unprotected and unsafe. Even in Tennessee, where in December 2008 a coal ash pond in Kingston collapsed, spilling over 1 billion gallons of the toxic waste across 300 acres, will not have protections in place to prevent a similar disaster from happening again.
If you want EPA to hold a public hearing on the proposed coal ash waste rule in your area, you need to request one. Requests for a public meeting should be submitted to EPA’s Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery by July 21, 2010.
Below is a sample letter and information on where to send it that was kindly provided to us by Sam Flenner with the Environmental Integrity Project. We strongly urge anyone who is concerned about this issue
to request a meeting in your area.
Alex Livnat, Ph.D
Materials Recovery and Waste Management Division
Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery
US EPA (MC: 5304P)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20460-0001
Tel: (703) 308-7251
Fax: (703) 605-0595
Re: Request for Public Hearing on EPA-HQ-RCRA-2009-0640, Hazardous and Solid Waste Management System; Identification and Listing of Special Wastes; Disposal of Coal Combustion Residuals from Electric Utilities
Dear Mr. Livnat,
I am writing to request that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency hold a public hearing on its recent proposal for Disposal of Coal Combustion Residuals from Electric Utilities (EPA-HQ-RCRA-2009-0640) in [NAME OF CITY, STATE] at [NAME OF VENUE, IF POSSIBLE OR STATE THAT ANY VENUE SHOULD BE EASILY REACHABLE BY PUBLIC TRANSIT] during the public comment period for the proposed rule.
The EPA should hold a hearing in [name of city] in order to receive comments from the communities most directly affected by coal combustion residue disposal. I/We also request this hearing occur from 9 am until 9 pm, in order to accommodate the many people who will want to attend either before or after work hours.
Thank you for considering this request and please feel free to contact me if you have any additional questions.
Cc: Steve Souders, EPA (Souders.Steve@epamail.epa.gov)
If the EPA receives requests for public meetings within this time frame, they will publish a notice in the Federal Register providing the details of such meetings. We’ll keep you posted of any meetings scheduled for Texas.
For more information on the proposed rule, supporting documentation and comments submitted go to HAZARDOUS AND SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM; IDENTIFICATION AND LISTING OF SPECIAL WASTES; DISPOSAL OF COAL COMBUSTION RESIDUALS FROM ELECTRIC UTILITIES
Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-RCRA-2009-0640, by one of the following methods:
- www.regulations .gov : Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.
- Email: Comments may be sent by electronic mail (e-mail) to firstname.lastname@example.org, .
Attention Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-RCRA-2009-0640.
By promoting cleaner energy, cleaner government, and cleaner air for all Texans, we hope to provide for a healthy place to live and prosper. We are Public Citizen Texas