Friday, October 22, 2010

S.S. Badger Still Dumping Coal Ash In Lake Michigan

Denied $14 million in federal funds to replace its coal-burring engines with diesels, the privately-owned S.S. Badger - - which buys its coal from Manitowoc's publicly-owned utility and routinely dumps its ash into Lake Michigan - - continues to steam towards a 2012 no-dumping deadline set by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

The ship is based in Ludington, MI and makes round-trips for passengers and cargo to Manitowoc.

Details here.

The ship claims its coal ash is no more hazardous to the environment than sand, and has long had a state of Wisconsin legislatively-created exemption to the Clean Air Act for its smokestack.

Installing an ash collection and disposal system is also an option, but the federal funding application, not realistic in the first place, frittered away a sailing season without real progress made on compliance.

Look for officials in both Ludington, MI and in Manitowoc, where the cities have a vested interest in the status quo to continue to enable this overt air and water pollution by trying to delay, even scuttle, the EPA order.

I've raised these issues for some time on this blog. You can find some of that here.

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