Toxic Wastewater from Coal Plants

Coal-fired power plants account for almost a third of the toxic pollution discharged to our rivers and streams from all industrial sources, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)– far more than any other industry. In November 2015, EPA finally published the first standards limiting toxic discharges from the mountains of coal ash and scrubber sludge that coal plants pile up every year. This report relies on publicly available data about water pollution releases of toxic metals from coal plants to assess how much work plants, state agencies, and the EPA need to do before the new rule’s limits start to take effect in 2018.