Michigan may authorize new uses for toxic coal ash

Current State logoMichigan may authorize new uses for toxic coal ash by Great Lakes Echo

One of the bills that cleared the Michigan legislature this session was a provision that allows certain bio-waste materials to be re-used for beneficial purposes. These substances include things like cement kiln dust, wood pulp and coal ash. Coal ash is the leftover residue from coal burned by electric power plants.

The bill permits coal ash to be used in road construction, but it may also be used in agriculture as a fertilizer supplement, causing some environmental advocates to become concerned.

Current State’s Kevin Lavery speaks with Republican State Representative Wayne Schmidt, the bill’s main sponsor, who strongly states that coal ash is completely safe and does not pose any environmental threats.

However, Tiffany Hartung, a member of the Michigan chapter of the Sierra Clubsays that coal ash is a toxic byproduct and should be treated as hazardous waste.

  • Harold

    Being ignorant must now be a requirement to be Republican.

    Foundry sand used to be considered harmless, too, and look what’s happened to those who foolishly used it as fill on their land. It is grossly negligent to now encourage farmers to apply coal ash onto their farmland.