Taking a break from the usual content, I thought the toxic spill of some 2.8 million cubic feet of coal fly ash warrants a reminder that fly ash is not only toxic, but it’s been shown to be even more radioactive than living near a nuclear plant.
At issue is coal’s content of uranium and thorium, both radioactive elements. They occur in such trace amounts in natural, or "whole," coal that they aren’t a problem. But when coal is burned into fly ash, uranium and thorium are concentrated at up to 10 times their original levels.
You might not get to hear this particular information on media outlets sponsored by "Clean Coal." The TVA, for its part, isn’t even admitting the ash is toxic.