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toxic waste 16 articles

Toxic waste removal a priority in wake of California wildfires

Wildfires that swept through Northern California in recent weeks devastated seven counties, including burning more than 100,000 acres of land in Sonoma and Napa counties alone. In the wake of the California fires, residents are facing a massive clean-up effort. One of the more complicated parts of this process involves identifying and disposing of toxic waste. Toxins include industrial and residential products including batteries, paint, electronics, flammable liquids and solvents, and materials that may contain asbestos. State and federal agencies are stepping in to assist. The Press Democrat reports that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will handle the first ... Read More

Toxic wastewater Spill Turns Colorado River Bright Orange

A million-gallon spill of toxic wastewater flowed from an old mine into the Animas River in Southern Colorado Wednesday, turning the waterway into a thick sludgy vivid orange and yellow and threatening human health and wildlife for miles. The release occurred when Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) workers were using heavy machinery to assess pollutants at the Gold King Mine, about 55 miles north of Durango, Colo. The mine is the property of San Juan Corp. of Golden, Colo., but it has been inactive for several years. The EPA has been monitoring the site for years without incident, but an apparent ... Read More

Anadarko agrees to pay record $5.15 billion for toxic waste cleanup costs

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. has agreed to pay $5.15 billion to clean up radioactive uranium, thorium, and other hazardous waste that was dumped throughout the United States, the U.S. Justice Department announced Thursday. The settlement is the largest recovery for environmental contamination in the nation’s history. Anadarko is the parent company of energy company Kerr-McGee Corp., which it acquired in 2006. According to the Justice Department, Kerr-McGee has an 85-year history of polluting U.S. communities and resources with toxic waste. Kerr-McGee’s perchlorate business contaminated Lake Mead, which flows into the Colorado River and provides drinking water to much of the Southwest United ... Read More

NC oil recycler agrees to pay $19 million for toxic waste contamination

WILMINGTON, N.C. – A Wilmington man who has pleaded guilty to violating the federal Toxic Substances Act, making false statements, and failing to pay several years of taxes, has been ordered to pay $19 million in restitution, the U.S. Justice Department announced. Benjamin Franklin Pass, 60, and his Leland, N.C.-based business P&W Waste Oil Services, Inc., admitted to unlawful dumping of waste oil containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and other toxic substances that resulted in widespread contamination of land adjoining the Cape Fear River and a federally recognized, ecologically sensitive wetland. Pass, whose property held multiple tanks ranging from 20,000 gallons ... Read More

Walmart settles criminal pollution charges in California for $81 million

Walmart Stores Inc. has pleaded guilty to criminal charges for illegally dumping hazardous waste into landfills and down sewer drains across California. The retail giant has agreed to pay $81 million to resolve the charges, which it has been fighting in court for nearly a decade. According to the Associated Press, Walmart entered the plea in federal court in San Francisco. The agreement also resolves similar criminal pollution charges in Missouri. Twenty prosecutors and 32 environmental groups were involved in the litigation against Walmart, the world’s largest retailer and private employer. Three years ago, the company agreed to pay $27.6 ... Read More

Tennessee senate votes to accept toxic waste from everywhere

NASHVILLE, TENN — Despite the efforts of two Tennessee state senators to halt or at least curtail the amount of nuclear waste in landfills, the State Senate voted Monday to continue to permit the dumping of radioactive waste in four Tennessee landfills. Senator Beverly Marrero, a Democratic senator from Memphis, told colleagues on the Senate Environment, Conservation & Tourism Committee that she remains concerned about the volume of radioactive waste pouring into the state for processing and burial. She introduced a bill to stop or at least restrict the amount of the waste that four Tennessee landfills are authorized to ... Read More

Hundreds of coal ash spill victims file lawsuits against TVA

Bruce Duncan’s family lives just three miles from where more than a billion gallons of toxic coal ash spilled from an impoundment pond at the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) coal-firing plant. They watch trucks loaded with recovered coal ash pass by their house every day en route to other landfills specially equipped to store the toxic waste. The Duncans would like to move away to a safer environment, like many in the area have. Living so close to the cleanup has made them ill. They have frequent nosebleeds, frontal headaches, increased shortness of breath, wheezing, asthma exacerbation and increased chest ... Read More

EPA says coal ash is safe to use as fertilizer on crops

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says it is OK for farmers to spread coal ash on to their fields to fertilize soil, even though the material contains toxins that have been linked to serious health complications such as cancer and liver damage. The agency says that the material contains just a trace amount of toxins that don’t pose a risk to humans through groundwater contamination or by consuming the crops. But environmentalists beg to differ. The coal ash, a byproduct of fossil fuel plants, which for years farmers have used to fertilize their fields, is also used to strengthen concrete ... Read More

Activists fight coal ash pond expansion along Ohio River

Concerned citizens and environmental activists are opposing plans to expand a coal ash pond along the Ohio River in northern Kentucky because they say if the pond ruptures, it could contaminate drinking water. The proposal from LG&E would build 100-foot-tall walls around an existing coal ash pond, giving it more capacity than the coal ash impoundment at the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Kingston, Tenn., plant, which failed last year and dumped more than a billion gallons of toxic waste on to a neighboring community. That spill, called one of the largest environmental disasters in U.S. history, knocked houses off their ... Read More

EPA report: Coal ash causes death, deformity in wildlife

Coal ash produced and stored by fossil fuel plants kills fish and other wildlife, damages their reproductive capacity, and contaminates wells, according to a report released this week by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The 230-page report culminates months of research triggered by last year’s massive coal ash spill from the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston, Tenn., plant. That spill dumped more than a billion gallons of toxic material onto a neighboring community where it knocked houses from their foundations, damaged property and contaminated nearby waterways. The report highlights the concern environmentalists have had for years – that coal ash produced ... Read More