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Lawsuit claims ash is toxic

October 18, 2011

There are a host of very
serious allegations being
made by several Bokoshe
residents who filed a class
action lawsuit last week in
LeFlore County District
Court.
The lawsuit filed against
more than 23 defendants,
including AES Shady Point,
on October 6 in LeFlore
County District Court states
that the Defendants’ conduct
in the transport, storage
and disposal of waste
materials from a coal burning
power plant and oil and
gas drilling operations has
resulted in millions of tons
of waste material being
transported and deposited
in a huge pile at the disposal
pit approximately one
mile southeast of Bokoshe.
The current six plaintiffs
claim that waste present
serious public health and
environmental risks to them
and their property and livestock.
The suit is basically
about fly ash, which is also
known as coal ash. The suit
states that coal ash contains
dangerous and harmful pollutants
and contaminants,
including aluminum, antimony,
arsenic, barium
baron, cadmium, chromium,
cobalt, copper, iron,
lead, magnesium, manganese,
mercury, molybdenum,
nickel, selenium, silver,
thallium, tin, titanium
and zinc.
The EPA has currently
ruled that fly ash is not
toxic. Those involved in the
lawsuit disagree.
The group also alleges
that AES along with
Thumbs up Ranch, who is
also named in the suit,
began illegally dumping the
ash at the ranch as early as
the mid-1990’s.
“AES and TUR continued
these illegal activities
until 2001, at which time
TUR received a permit for
a portion of its property to
be used as a commercial
disposal pit for the disposal
of coal ash,” it states in the
suit.
It goes on to say that residents
were never warned or
given notice of the emission
of hazardous substances onto
their properties and bodies of
water and that the defendants
should have known what was
going to happen.
“Instead of giving the
community warning and
notice, defendants actively
engaged in a campaign of
deception to mislead community
residents into believing
that the coal ash waste
material did not and does not
present any threat and is
incapable of causing any
harm to person or property,”
it states in the suit.
It goes on to say that
instead of warning the community
those involved sought
to intentionally deceive
them.
AES officials said on
Monday that they hope to
have a response to the suit
soon but that they believe the
allegations in the suit are
baseless and without merit.

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