What is Coal Ash?
Coal ash is a dangerous by-product of burning coal for energy, containing harmful metals and chemicals like arsenic, lead, and selenium.
Coal ash is not subject to federal regulation, and state laws governing coal combustion waste disposal are usually weak or non-existent.
Across the country, millions of tons of coal ash are being stored in ponds, landfills and abandoned mines. Many of these sites lack adequate safeguards leaving nearby communities at risk from potential large scale disasters, like the massive coal ash spill in Tennessee, and from gradual yet equally dangerous contamination as coal ash toxins seep into drinking water sources.
Note: There are over 600 EPA-identified coal ash waste sites throughout the United States. This map is not comprehensive. Check back for updates.