Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Jan 24- Feb 2, 2009 Updates from United Mountain Defense about TVA's coal ash disaster

Feb 2, 2009 Monday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/



Today was the second day of training from the Global Community Monitor. Today Diana Anderson of the TN Coal Ash Survivors Network and Matt Landon of United Mountain Defense learned how to operate Air Metric’s Mini Volume air monitor. This machine is very user friendly and maintains its calibration for one year.

The air monitoring volunteers learned about how to use various filters for the monitors and how to maintain the integrity of the filter sample. They learned how to troubleshoot the monitoring machine. They also learned about properly mounting the monitor on power poles or house roofs and other important sighting instructions.

Anderson and Landon also learned about filling out chain of custody forms, and how to tamper proof the filter cases for shipping to the lab.

We finally got back to TN’s community map we had drawn two days prior. After reviewing this map with GCM staff we decided on locations for Swipe Testing and then Air Quality Testing.

More importantly we learned about the impacts of air pollution on other communities and how similar their concerns are to our own concerns.

We ended the training by looking to the future. Matt Landon of United Mountain Defense helped bring the Bucket Brigade to Appalachia in order to provide another community organizing tool that would give back to the communities. He envisioned using TVA’s coal ash disaster as a pilot project to show how easy it is for communities to do this type of monitoring and help bring it to coal impacted communities across the region. He wants to see Bucket Brigades at Marsh Fork Elementary School in West Virginia and at surface coal mines, coal processing plants, and coal burning plants across the region. Won’t you help?

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Feb 1, 2009 Sunday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

Super Bowl Sunday was spent researching a number of online sources of data that we had left untapped till this point.

Matt Landon, United Mountain Defense volunteer staff person, took a virtual car ride through the Swan Pond Community before the coal ash disaster using Google Street View. He found photos of the leaking dam located at 1222 Swan Pond Rd. There was photographic evidence of red iron oxide and heavy metal laden water leaking from the toe of the dam. Whenever water is leaking from the base of the damn it is a bad sign and could foreshadow failure.

We also viewed Roane County property tax maps online. These property maps incorporated aerial photography as well making the property searches so much easier. These maps were not up to date as they did not show the properties recently purchased by TVA along Berkshire Ln and Lakeshore Rd.

Diana Anderson of the TN Coal Ash Survivors Network and Matt Landon of United Mountain Defense met with Sarah Goldberg of the Kelley Campaign, a Public Relations group based in Washington DC. Sarah Goldberg was very excited to meet with us and learn more information about what was happening from our firsthand accounts. The Kelley Campaign has been working on a campaign to counter the “Cl*** Coal” campaign of 2008. The Kelley Campaign is working with United Mountain Defense to help amplify our media presence. They have a staff dedicated to writing press releases, distributing them to national and international media, and helping with ground work logistics like setting up citizen press conferences. This is the start to be a beautiful relationship……

After catching the last 15 minutes of the Super Bowl and seeing that incredible touchdown play by the PA Steelers Matt Landon helped Diana Anderson create her first blog. The blog’s title is the Tennessee Coal Ash Survivors Network. The blog’s address is http://tncasn.blogspot.com

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 31, 2009 Saturday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

Diana Anderson of the TN Coal Ash Survivors Network and Matt Landon of United Mountain Defense traveled to Deleware today to receive training from the Global Community Monitor (GCM) organization. www.gcmonitor.org

Matt Landon of UMD video taped the entire two day training session so that other community members in Deleware, TN, and the world could review the training. Today’s training consisted of learning about the history and successes of the Bucket Brigade, GCM’s most notable air monitoring project. The community that hosted us today was plagued by numerous polluting industries and was in the first steps of beginning to self monitor the air quality. One of the first steps in the process was called a log sheet. A brainstorming session led to the development of the “I SEE, I SMELL, I FEEL” sections for residents to fill out for each air pollution event. Based on these pollution log sheets GCM and the community would be able to decide where to put up Swipe Tests and then Mini Volume Air Monitors.

A really good excerise was for the community members to make a map of the major polluters in the area and show the locations of surrounding houses and other points of interest such as schools, hospitals, existing air monitors, and prevailing wind directions.

This training provided a good basis for how the Bucket Brigade would proceed in TN and we got one step closer to having a solid monitoring plan. Thank you Global Community Monitor for providing a helpful training session.

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 30, 2009 Friday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

United Mountain Defense volunteer staff person, Matt Landon was awoken to a call from a TN Highway Patrol officer calling from Arizona. The officer said he would send out an officer to the disaster site and would further investigate the CFR on solid waste to figure out about the solid waste regulations.

Landon traveled to the University of TN in Knoxville for a PodCast interview that was conducted at the college radio station, WUOT 91.9. The PodCast will be aired by On the Earth, a project of NRDC. Thanks, NRDC.

After the interview Landon did more research about the Mini Volume air samplers from Air Metrics and the different filters available for the sampler. He was also packing his bags at the same time for a flight to Washington DC.

Diana Anderson of TN Coal Ash Survivors Network and Matt Landon of United Mountain Defense boarded a flight to DC and then drove to Deleware for a two day training by the Global Community Monitor (GCM). GCM is a non profit organization that has trained community members around the globe to use various air monitoring techniques and equipment in order to gather independent data on their own. GCM is currently working with 18 impacted communities across the globe and is very excited about beginning to work in Appalachia on the issue of FILTHY COAL.

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 29, 2009 Thursday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

Bonnie Swinford, UMD volunteer coordinator finalized the water monitoring data with Jeff Stant on UMD’s Google map for 3 hours. Good job, Bonnie!!
Matt Landon, UMD volunteer staff took a boat ride on Emory River with TN Wildlife Resources Agency. Until this point Landon had mistakenly thought that a rock weir had been constructed across the Emory River to contain the coal fly ash. Upon boating up the river he learned that TVA had temporarily abandoned this Emory River rock weir project. The boat shuttled the History Channel’s camera crew, reporter, and Matt Landon up and down the river next to the disaster site numerous times in order to get the best shots and to provide enough time to interview TWRA’s Bobby Brown and UMD’s Matt Landon. Landon used the new YSI digital water monitor purchased with a grant from the NRDC. Thank you NRDC!! We were able to check for specific conductivity, pH, dissolved oxygen, and temperature.

Once we got off the river and defrosted our hands Landon led the History Channel crew to Lakeshore Drive for an interview with Rick Cantrell, a local resident whose family was evacuated by TVA. Cantrell gave a stellar interview.
Landon called Paul Sloan of TDEC and the TN Highway Patrol after video taping vehicles exiting the disaster site without being washed first.

A community volunteer meeting was organized for the evening at the Roane State Expo Center. At this meeting the volunteers decided on what content to put on their website, what was their group’s name, and when and where the next volunteer meeting would be held. The Tennessee Coal Ash Survivors Network came into existence. Their website is www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com and they have a blog at http://tncasn.blogspot.com

Diana Anderson of TCASN offered to host the next volunteer meeting.

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 28, 2009 Wenesday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

There was a fundraiser set up in Nashville, TN. Local resident, Rick Cantrell attended the fundraiser and spoke about the difficulties his community is facing at this time with TVA’s coal ash disaster. Cantrell reported that nearly 100 people attended the fundraiser where local old time musicians strummed banjos and guitars.
United Mountain Defense volunteer staff person, Matt Landon made phone calls reminding local residents about the volunteer meeting on Thursday night. Landon also received his first email from Bob Alexander of TDEC admitting that TDEC was allowing vehicles to drive off site with coal ash on them.

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 27, 2009 Tuesday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

United Mountain Defense volunteer staff person, Matt Landon called all of the regulatory agencies to report the problems of coal ash tracking. Landon called TN Highway Patrol, TN Bureau of Investigation, Bob Alexander of TDEC, EPA criminal division. After speaking with the EPA criminal division Landon was told he would be called by TVA’s OIG in the next week. Landon learned that EPA can’t regulate coal fly ash tracking. EPA doesn’t investigate it because it is not a hazardous waste. After speaking with the TBI, Landon emailed the District Attorney about the tracking problem to file an official compliant.

United Mountain Defense volunteers worked on gathering releases from residents who received heavy metal exposure screening. They picked up disaster photos that were taken to Washington DC. Bonnie and Tom picked up some more human samples for the heavy metal exposure testing. These samples were kept on ice then refrigerated until they were delivered to Internal Balance on Wenesday Jan 28, 2009.
UMD volunteers distributed TVA’s coal fly ash Material Safety Data Sheets to the local residents as they drove around the community.

Matt Landon spoke with a local resident, Judy Scofield, who has had massive asthma attacks since the coal ash disaster occurred. She is now using a steroid inhaler to help her breath. Landon was near tears as she retold her story. He offered to have a call in day to the TVA to politely ask TVA to call Judy Scofield. Judy had not received any phone calls from TVA for nearly two weeks after requesting to be evacuated after a doctor’s suggestion about her respiratory distress being linked to TVA’s coal ash. After the first day of the call in campaign for Judy Scofield she received a phone call from TVA. They informed her they would send CTEH out to check the air quality. Unfortunately CTEH is using inadequate air monitoring equipment. CTEH showed up and after a few minutes told Judy the air was okay.
The call in campaign continues until Judy Scofield is moved to a safer location by TVA.

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 26, 2009 Monday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

Bonnie Swinford, UMD’s volunteer coordinator and grant writer has provided major support of ALL of the work that has occurred around TVA’s coal ash disaster. Today Bonnie submitted receipts for multiple grants, updated UMD’s project budget, and made copies of TVA’s Material Safety Data Sheets.
Matt Landon got an email from TDEC about their air quality monitoring after calling TDEC to figure out why they had not installed the high volume air quality monitors around the disaster site. He learned that TDEC had chosen to not install more than one high volume air monitor.
Matt Landon got background air monitoring data from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park for the past 20 years after emailing Jim Renfro for assistance in Harriman, TN.

It was finally time to get back down to get back to the disaster site. Matt Landon had promised to take a Eva to the doctor on the previous Friday due to her deep lung cough. Unfortunately he was not able to take her on Friday and so awoke early Monday morning and drove her to the doctor. Her doctor could not give her a diagnosis but did offer to set up an appointment with a lung specialist in Oak Ridge, TN and gave her a prescription for Cipro, a strong antibiotic. The doctor thought that her deep lung cough was caused by a bacteria. Eva was not able to afford the anti biotic so she had to wait until Feb 1 to get the prescription.
After the doctor’s visit I offered to drive Eva around to see the rest of the disaster site. Eva does not have a vehicle and walks everywhere because she is legally blind in one eye. Her grand daughter is not old enough to drive either. Even though she lives within ½ a mile of the disaster site she has not seem it yet as no one helped her get there yet.

As we drove around the Swan Pond Community we saw that one of the local churches driveways was open after being blockaded for the past four weeks. As we drove up to the cemetery overlooking the disaster site Eva gasped as she saw the destruction. She commented that she had fished many an afternoon in that part of the lake that was now completely filled in by TVA’s coal ash. She just kept repeating that TVA had made such a mess, TVA had made such a mess.
While we were peacefully observing the work at the disaster site a TVA police officer came up the driveway and pulled to a halt in front of our vehicle. Matt Landon was recording and turned the camera on the TVA officer. This officer did not like the camera and asked for identification which Matt Landon produced. The officer got back in his vehicle and drove away with his ID. Upon returning the officer instructed Landon and Eva to evacuate the premises. Of course they complied immediately.

The whole time the video tape was rolling UMD was recording dirty dump trucks and other unwashed vehicles leaving TVA’s coal ash disaster site while tracking coal fly ash out onto the public roads of Roane County and East TN.
As Landon and Eva drove around on the public roads of Roane County they videotaped the work at TVA’s coal ash disaster. Upon driving on Berkshire Rd they were once again pulled over by the TVA police and Landon was given a citation for trespassing, his second citation for trespassing from TVA. Later Landon found out that TVA has bought all of the property along Berkshire Rd so it is their property.
There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense


Jan 25, 2009 Sunday


Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/

Today we celebrated Tom’s birthday. Tom is Bonnie’s dad and he recently chose to move down to TN from Indianapolis. He was temporarily living at the UMD volunteer house until he found a house of his own. He did find a house and then this coal ash disaster occurred and he has been on the ground since Dec 22, 2008.
Matt Landon of United Mountain Defense sent out a procedure for doing a swipe test to the Swan Pond community email list serve after receiving multiple requests.
Chris Irwin, UMD staff attorney took a Gentlemen’s Quarterly reporter and photographer up to the King Mountain Mountainside Coal surface mine in Claiborne County near Eagan, TN to photograph the complete cycle of coal, from the cradle to the grave.

Later in the evening UMD had a board meeting where a plan of action was generated for the upcoming week.

There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

Jan 24, 2009 Saturday

Dear folks,

(please repost to all news sources)

Check out www.unitedmountaindefense.org
Check out http://dirtycoaltva.blogspot.com
Check out www.tennesseecoalashsurvivorsnetwork.com
Check out http://tncasn.blogspot.com
Check out http://www.roaneviews.com/
Check out Swan Pond Resident: http://lifeonswanpond.livejournal.com/


A good portion of the day was spent helping get the carpet installed in the United Mountain Defense volunteer house. Chris Irwin, UMD staff attorney, took GQ magazine in a Southwings flyover of the TVA coal ash disaster site, the windfarm on Buffalo Mountain, and the surface coal mines of East Tennessee. GQ is writing about coal from the cradle to the grave with surface mines and destruction of the highland watersheds being the cradle. The TVA coal ash disaster shows the end product of coal cycle, the grave.
There is no shortage of a need for project funding. United Mountain Defense is a 501c3 and we are seeking funding or co-sponsoring organizations to help fund personal protection equipment, bottled water, independent air and water monitoring, and real time web cams.

If you are a resident impacted by TVA's coal ash disaster please contact us at 865 689 2778.

If you can make a donation of money or other resources please send a check to United Mountain Defense P.O. Box 20363 Knoxville, TN 37920 or use our PayPal account at www.unitedmountaindefense.org


Till then ,matt landon full time volunteer staff person for United Mountain Defense

1 comment:

Craig White said...

nice article upon pollution issue..... i had found more information about basic of pollution issue but this is not sufficient. If you know more please explain.