Press Release | May 6, 2022

Groups file to intervene in polluters’ petition to block EPA coal ash enforcement in Georgia

WASHINGTON — Today the Southern Environmental Law Center filed a motion in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to allow the Altamaha Riverkeeper, the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, and the Coosa River Basin Initiative to intervene in petitions filed by coal ash utilities.

The coal ash utilities seek to block preliminary actions taken by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to enforce longstanding provisions of the federal Coal Combustion Residuals (CCR) Rule, which protect clean water and communities from coal ash pollution. A member of the coal ash utility trade association that filed one of the petitions, Georgia Power, stores millions of tons of coal ash sitting in groundwater in waterfront unlined pits in the Altamaha, Chattahoochee, and Coosa River watersheds in Georgia.

SELC released the following statement by senior attorney Frank Holleman:  

“It is long past time that Georgia Power’s risky, leaking coal ash lagoons are cleaned up and that Georgia’s rivers and communities are protected from this threat. Every unlined waterfront coal ash pit in South Carolina and North Carolina is being cleaned up, and Georgia’s residents and clean water deserve the same protections. By intervening, the groups that protect the Altamaha, Chattahoochee, and Coosa Rivers will be able to speak up for their rivers and the people who depend upon them.” 

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Emily Driscoll

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