Southeastern Atlantic Region
New NLM page on TVA Kingston Fossil Plant Coal Ash Spill
On December 22, 2008, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Kingston Fossil Plant's retention pond failed, creating a tidal wave of water and fly ash which destroyed several homes and ruptured a major gas line in a neighborhood located adjacent to the plant in Harriman, Tennessee. It is estimated that approximately 3.1 million cubic feet of fly ash and water were released on to land adjacent to the plant and into the nearby Clinch and Emory River.
There's concern about the potential effects of this spill on the quality of water, air and soil in the region. From its extensive environmental health and toxicology resources, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) has compiled a Web page of links to chemical information on fly ash and medical journal articles on the ash's possible human health effects, http://sis.nlm.nih.gov/enviro/coalashspill.html.
These resources provide background information on fly ash, also known as coal ash, which is a by-product of burning coal in power plants to generate electricity. Links to public health information from local and federal authorities responding to this incident are also included. For more information on TOXNET and other NLM environmental health and toxicology resources, please visit http://tox.nlm.nih.gov