Coal ash regulation disputed by Manchin

18 February, 2010 - According to the Associated Press, West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin is urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to drop plans to regulate coal ash from power plants as hazardous waste.

The issue is a particularly sensitive one to Manchin and his home state of West Virginia. West Virginia ranks second in the nation among coal production.

"Coal ash recycling is a multibillion dollar industry that provides thousands of truly green jobs across our country," Manchin said. "Hastily raising its status to 'hazardous' could actually cause more environmental harm and place undue financial burden on countless thousands of Americans."

In addition, Manchin voiced concerns that the regulation would force coal-fired power plants to switch to other fuels.

The issue of coal ash regulation has grown in significance since the TVA Kingston Fossil Plant coal fly ash slurry spill which covered 300 acres of land and released 1.1 billion gallons of coal fly ash slurry in December 2008.

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