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Resource ID: #24023
Source:Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk, Va.)
This series of stories showed how a virtually unknown state environmental policy, blessed by the EPA, let developers sculpt an 18-hole golf course with 1.5 million tons of "fly ash," a contaminant-laden residue left from the burning of coal for electricity, posing a threat to the wells of adjacent homeowners. Fly ash contains heavy metals such as arsenic, lead and mercury, which can pose environmental threats through air and water. Although the EPA has been studying the the environmental;ecological impacts of fly ash for decades, it has twice determined that it doesn't warrant classification as "hazardous waste." The result is that there are no national guidelines for fly ash disposal; regulation is left up to the states, resulting in a hodge-podge of policies.