Sierra Club
Sierra Club Press Release

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October 14, 2011

Contact: Alex Wall, 202-548-4595

U.S. House Passes Bill to Keep Communities Exposed to Toxic Coal Ash
Vote Endangers Americans’ Drinking Water 

Washington, D.C. – Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act (H.R. 2273), a bill that endangers the health and safety of thousands of communities.

In response, Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune issued the following statement:

“It’s no wonder that Rep. David McKinley, who introduced this reckless and dangerous bill, received an ‘F’ for his clean water voting record.  Coal ash is a dangerous by-product of burning coal, and contains mercury, arsenic, lead and other life-threatening pollutants that leach into the water supply.

“Outrageously, this dirty and dangerous bill would put a weak scheme in place that requires more protections on household trash than toxic coal ash, even though coal ash pollution includes health risks like cancer, neurological disorders, birth defects, reproductive failure, asthma and other serious illnesses.

“To keep their operating costs as low as possible, however, polluters are digging in their heels and marshaling their pro-polluter allies in Congress against commonsense operating standards and public health protections.

“Rep. McKinley and other members of Congress who voted for H.R. 2273 today are catering to polluter interests over the health and well-being of their constituents.  This bill is yet another dangerous attack by House Leadership on public health protections, and we urge the Senate to reject it.”


View the Sierra Club’s new Clean Water Report Card Here.