Efforts Were On For The Last 6 Years To Prevent New Standard
On Friday, a new Federal standard may come up by which waste generated from coal burned for electricity will be treated like household garbage and not like a hazardous material. The unveiling will put the brakes on a 6 year effort which began after a huge coal ash spill at a Tennessee power plant in 2008,where coalash began filling up the ponds and landfill sites. Its volume is second only to household garbage and Environmental groups want it to be treated likehazardous material. As Michael Brune, head of the Sierra Club said, “What we have been looking for is for coal ash to be treated like the hazardous waste it is,” “It should be treated as such. If it is not, that shows the influence and pressure of the coal industry.”
Move Strongly Opposed By Recycling Market
The move to classify coal ash as a hazardous material was opposed by the recycling industry who said that it will spell doom for them because almost 40% of the coal ash is recycled. Classifying coal ash as solid waste leaves it up to citizens and states to ensure standards are met for its proper disposal. Republican said that this was nothing but an attempt by the Obama administration to pull down the coal-fired power industry.
Coal Ash Not Classified As Hazardous In 1988 And 1993
Before the latest ruling, which may effectively put coal ash out of the hazardous material list, two otherattempts were successfully made to exempt it from the hazardous material list – Once in 1988 and again in 1993. Now the government has said that solid waste classification may be adequate to address any risks associated with coal ash.