Thunder Ridge Mine

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This article is part of the Coal Issues portal on SourceWatch, a project of Global Energy Monitor and the Center for Media and Democracy. See here for help on adding material to CoalSwarm.

Thunder Ridge Mine is a surface operation in Leslie County, KY, owned by International Coal Group.

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Mine Data

  • MSHA ID: 1517746
  • Operator: ICG Hazard, LLC
  • Controller: International Coal Group
  • Union:
  • County: Leslie
  • State: KY
  • Latitude: 37.07
  • Longitude: -83.34
  • 2007 Production (short tons): 846,719
  • Coal Type: Bituminous
  • Mining Method: Surface
  • Mine Status: Active
  • Average No. of Employees: 83

Selenium discharges at mine

On May 25, 2011, the Sierra Club filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in London, Kentucky, accusing ICG Hazard of violating the federal Clean Water Act and Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 at the Thunder Ridge Mine in Leslie County, KY. The group is seeking an order requiring ICG Hazard to install selenium treatment facilities at the mine and pay $37,500 in fines for each day the law was violated. ICG Hazard's permit for the Thunder Ridge mine allows it to discharge some pollutants to Lower Bad Creek and several tributaries, including Greasy Creek and Roundhole Branch of Greasy Creek. The lawsuit said ICG Hazard, which the company said produced 3.7 million tons of coal in 2009, has discharged selenium into the water at levels that could harm aquatic life and exceeded Kentucky's standard for what is allowable. High levels of selenium in humans may cause hair and fingernail loss, with long term exposure damaging the kidneys, liver, nervous and circulatory systems. In aquatic life, selenium can cause reproductive failure, birth defects and damage to gills and internal organs.[1]

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References

  1. Brett Barrouquere, "Sierra Club sues coal company over Ky. water" AP, May 25, 2011.

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