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EPA 'Re-Evaluates' Partnership without Bothering to Tell its Partners

            For all of its high-minded talk about “transparency” and “community involvement,” the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has a funny way of treating people it calls “partners.”  Without saying a word to the more than 200 members of the Coal Combustion Products Partnership program, EPA has summarily replaced its entire web site with the one-line statement: “The Coal Combustion Products Partnerships (C2P2) program Web pages have been removed while the program is being re-evaluated.”

            The abrupt and unannounced removal of the C2P2 web site apparently occurred without discussion or notification to any of the program partners.  EPA also has not told any of the program partners what its “re-evaluation” entails or even who is performing it.

            In May, EPA “suspended active participation” in the C2P2 program – also without notice to anyone outside the agency.  At that time, EPA quietly posted this announcement on the home page of the program web site:  “On May 4th, 2010, EPA proposed the first-ever national rules to ensure the safe disposal and management of coal combustion residuals from coal-fired power plants. While EPA is engaged in the rulemaking process, the Agency has suspended active participation in the Coal Combustion Products Partnership. EPA continues to believe that beneficial use of coal combustion residuals, when performed properly and in a safe manner, is beneficial to the environment.”

            EPA’s now completely missing web site contained large volumes of information about the proper uses of recycled coal ash. This information included fact sheets, project case studies, official publications by numerous federal agencies, formal reviews of state regulatory systems, and much more.

        The Coal Combustion Products Partnership was created in 2003.  It is a cooperative effort between EPA and the American Coal Ash Association (ACAA), Utility Solid Waste Activities Group (USWAG), Department of Energy (DOE), Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and the United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) to “promote the beneficial use of coal combustion products (CCPs) and the environmental benefits that result from their use.”

            To see where the C2P2 program web site used to be, click here: http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/partnerships/c2p2/index.htm



Posted by: on: Jul 07, 2010 @ 04:39