Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., introduced legislation today to regulate coal ash ponds.
Among other things, the “Coal Ash Reclamation, Environment and Safety Act” would:
--Impose federal design, engineering and performance standards on all coal combustion waste impoundments.
--Require the Interior Department to conduct an inventory of all coal combustion waste impoundments in the United States, and assess their design, stability and risk to human health and the environment.
The environmental group EarthJustice said even more is needed, in the aftermath of the 1.1 billion gallon ash spill on Dec. 22 near Knoxville, Tenn.
It said the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency needs to outlaw all wet storage of coal ash to avoid toxic heavy metals from getting into ground and surface water.
UPDATE: Charleston (WV) Gazette has more details.