Friday, January 02, 2009

River Spill Site Arsenic Levels 100 to 300 Times Acceptable Amount

EPA says they found 149 times the regulatory limit of arsenic at the Kingston coal ash spill site.

Environmentalist groups show Appalachian State report from water they collected on December 27 containing 300 times the allowable limits of arsenic. The professor who conducted the tests warned:

"The ecosystems around Kingston and Harriman are going to be in trouble, the aquatic ones for some time, until nature is able to bury these compounds in the environment," Tuberty said. "I don't how long that will take, maybe generations."

Tuberty also cautioned the ash might be harmful to people if it dries out and becomes airborne, a concern that's been acknowledged by TVA officials.

According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, what the Clinton and Bush EPA set for an "acceptable amount" of arsenic is still a carcinogenic amount.

UPDATE: Knoxnews reports that the EPA tests were from river water samples collected on December 23. The higher scoring environmentalist test collections were conducted on December 27. The concentration did not seem to dissipate over time, but doubled.

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