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TVA weighs in on potential coal ash regulation | News

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TVA weighs in on potential coal ash regulation
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TVA's president and CEO weighed in on the safety and use of coal ash before the Environmental Protection Agency issues regulations for the first time.

The EPA is expected to announce those regulations by Friday. That's just six days before the sixth anniversary of the Kingston Ash Spill

Previous: TVA Ash Spill measured in billions

On December 22, 2008, coal ash spilled which covered 300 acres of land in the sludge.

Coal ash is what's left behind when power plants use coal for electricity.

More information: Roane Co. moves forward after coal ash spill

Some say it's toxic and full of heavy metals like lead and mercury. Currently, it's considered a solid waste.

The EPA can chose to keep that designation or consider coal ash a hazardous waste.

That would mean the coal industry would have to spend millions of dollars to comply with new regulations.

TVA does not believe coal ash is hazardous.

"We recycle more than a third of our ash every year for beneficial reuse," said TVA CEO and President Bill Johnson. "Highways, shingles from your roof, cosmetics – there's a tremendous reuse of ash."

The EPA could also issue regulations on how coal ash is disposed of and stored.

TVA says its impoundments, or dam-like structures where the ash is stored, are safe and stable.


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