Friday, November 4, 2011

S.S. Badger Continues End Run Around Lake Michigan Coal Ash Dumping

For some time  - - for example, here -  I have been calling attention to the daily coal ash dump into Lake Michigan by the last remaining coal-fired steamer on the Great Lakes.

Awareness of the issue - - including company efforts to get exempted from federal clean water regulations - - has been rising since 2009.

Yet even after finally facing a pending 2012 EPA order to convert to cleaner fuel and cease the dumping practice- - as other Great Lakes ships have done - - the Badger's owners, while running a PR campaign also appear to have found a new way to delay and perhaps end the EPA's regulatory push:

Getting the ship declared a National Historical Landmark that is beyond EPA regulatory authority.

So the 3.8 ton coal ash daily dump - - thus somewhere between 500-to-600 tons in a shipping season, according to published estimates - - would continue into the lake. Even permissible close to shore, in certain emergency circumstances.

As a historical, Landmark-honoring necessity?

Will that happen?

Here is a link to the Landmark nomination.

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