The Environment Protection Coalition set up by Earthjustice, the Environmental Integrity Project and the Sierra Club, have scrutinized coal waste disposal across 21 states in the U.S. to come up with their survey results.
The data was collected from various state agencies and shows that more sites have contaminated water with toxic metals than previously thought.
The coalition is asking the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to regulate the waste produced by coal fired power plants so that the problem of toxic metals leaching into ground water can be controlled. The new report comes in at a time when the federal government is already considering imposing new regulations on coal ash.
The contaminants included toxic metals such as arsenic, lead, selenium, and cadmium. The waste handling practices of the North Dakota power stations at Antelope Valley and Leland Olds came under criticism for elevated levels of arsenic.
Both power plants are owned by the Basin Electric Power Cooperative. A spokesperson for the company said that there was no evidence of drinking water being affected by the plants. The health officials even said that arsenic occurred naturally in much of the soil present in North Dakota. It may take more than that to convince the environmental coalition.