Transparency buried beneath ash heap. Wallboard the fix?

There are apparently 44 coal ash heaps that endanger human lives in the U.S.
Written by Harry Fuller, Contributor

There are apparently 44 coal ash heaps that endanger human lives in the U.S. That's the EPA's conclusion. And those 44 sites will remain secret because you or some other terrorist might unleash a deadly ash flow through the coal-burning communities of the U.S. I blogged earlier that a U.S. Senator had been told not to release the information. Now the EPA has been instructed by Homeland Security to keep the info on ash heaps secret. Perhaps it is time to keep all dam sites and nuc plant locations and pig poop piles and compost heaps secret as well. In addition I'm afraid of the dark and looming shadows so can we keep those secret as well? You never know.... A couple minutes on Google turned up this list of fifty major ash sites that are considered worst sources of toxic metals contained in the coal ash heaps. Here's an online EPA report that lists dozens of specific coal ash dump sites that have caused pollution problems in the past. Does anybody in D.C. really imagine there's a terrorist with serious explosive capability that could NOT somehow find a coal-burning plant with its accompanying ash heap? Duh.

The information I really want: have we the collective gumption to do anything about these ash heaps? Bet we could sell the ash to China who'd turn it into wallboards and sell them back to us at a good profit, thereby growing even more capitalism in what was once the world's biggest communist nation. Who could possibly complain about that? The market works in wondrous ways. S'pose we could find a way to turn some of that verdant D.C. paranoia into fertilizer, bottle it and grow tomatoes? We could keep the whole process a secret, of course. HEAPS OF ASH: GROWING PROBLEM How big is this coal ash pile prob? Big. 440 coal-burning electricity plants in the U.S. Let's put it into cheap wallboard and sell it to China. Turnabout's fair in the free market. UNHAPPY WALLBOARD VICTIMS Florida has a major fraction of the estimated 100,000 homes with possibly defective and dangerous Chinese-made wallboard that leaches sulphurous gases when wet. And in Florida wet is just part of the formula. It's in the air. [poll id="145"] Way back in May the EPA said some Chinese wallboard in Florida contained strontium, sulphur and organics not found in American-made wallboard. Of course, no problem can be over-studied so further tests are being run by the EPA and various state health departments.

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