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Coal Ash Dump Disaster Strikes East Tennessee

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Just days after Al Gore and a bunch of environmental organisations launched a “Reality Coalition” campaign to tell the American public that there is no “clean coal” they might have gotten their best advertisement, ever.

Last month a coal ash dam in Harriman, East Tennessee, USA, ruptured and sent out billions of gallons of toxic sludge across a 300 acres big area, even knocking one home off its foundation. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) these coal ash damns can reach up to 1,500 acres and contains heavy metals like arsenic, lead, mercury and selenium which the federal agency considers to be “a threat to water supplies and human health.”

“This spill shows that coal can never be ‘clean,’” said Kate Smolski, Senior Legislative Coordinator for Greenpeace. “If the Exxon Valdez was a symbol of pollution 20 years ago, the Tennessee Coal Spill of 2008 is the symbol of it today.”

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