There’s not a lot of good environmental news out there these days; Pres. Trump and his minions continue to thumb their snobby noses at consensus scientific fact as they plow ignorantly ahead with undoing environmental protections and regulations.
But there are some bright spots. With that, here’s a roundup of recent environmental items:
The TVA and what to do about tons and tons of coal ash
Like Duke Energy along rivers here in North Carolina, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has a problem with disposal and storage of coal ash generated by its power plants along waterways in Tennessee.
According to the New York Times, the TVA acknowledges some of the heavy metals and other harmful byproducts of coal fired energy plants have escaped containment from coal ash pits and have leeched into ground waters, including the Cumberland River.
Part of the problem, according to the Times, is some storage pits lie directly over karst, a permeable limestone; the percolation allows pollutants to roam freely to groundwater supplies impacting more than one million people. And it is no small problem; the TVA has 200,000 tons of coal ash to dispose of each year.
The article also cites lawsuits attempting to bring TVA coal ash practices in line.
Uh, Donald, solar is where the jobs are
Our POTUS (really? SAD) persists in the pipe dream that he, and only he, can restore American jobs, particularly in the last-gasp industry that is coal.
Well, The Donald should spend less time Tweeting and put his alleged businessman’s eyeglasses on the job potential of solar power. It is putting the fossil fuel industry to shame in job growth.
According to thinkprogress.org, “… last year, more than 51,000 people in the United States were hired to design, manufacture, sell and install solar panels, according to a new reportfrom The Solar Foundation. That means the solar industry created jobs 17 times faster than the economy as a whole.”
The solar industry now employs twice as many people in the United States as the coal industry and roughly the same number of people as the natural gas industry.
Here’s the link: https://thinkprogress.org/solar-jobs-report-2016-8f0e7c7b91c4
People clean up Chicago shoreline
The mantra of Pick Up Your Path continues to spread.
But near Chicago in Waukegan, citizens have rolled up their sleeves to clean up their portion of lakeshore along Lake Michigan, according to PUYP subscriber Tom Bohr of Chicago.
He sent this link from the Chicago Tribune (a newspaper I used to write for back in the day). It seems the city has trimmed more than 100 jobs – some of those employees had helped keep the shoreline clean – but now residents and businesses have taken it upon themselves to put litter in its place.