Tennessee Ash Flood Larger Than Initial Estimate

By SHAILA DEWAN Published: December 26, 2008

A coal ash spill in eastern Tennessee that experts were already calling the largest environmental disaster of its kind in the United States is more than three times as large as initially estimated, according to an updated survey by the Tennessee Valley Authority.

The area around the Kingston Fossil Plant in Harriman, Tenn., where 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash spilled on Monday.

Officials at the authority initially said that about 1.7 million cubic yards of wet coal ash had spilled when the earthen retaining wall of an ash pond at the Kingston Fossil Plant, about 40 miles west of Knoxville, gave way on Monday. But on Thursday they released the results of an aerial survey that showed the actual amount was 5.4 million cubic yards, or enough to flood more than 3,000 acres one foot deep.

NP NowPublic

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