Communities living near the Tamnar-Gharghoda coal fields in the state of Chhattisgarh are plagued by significant environmental pollution and land disturbance from coal mining. The coal is transported to two nearby coal-fired power plants, which emit hazardous air pollutants and generate tons of toxic coal ash.
Director: Mineral Development, Gauteng Region v Save the Vaal Environment (Case No. 133/98) SCA 9, Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa (12 March 1999), available at https://cer.org.za/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/Save-the-Vaal-Environment-v-DME.pdf or http://www.saflii.org/za/cases/ZASCA/1999/9.pdf
European Commission v. Federal Republic of Germany, Case C 142/16 (April 26, 2017)
European Court of Justice
German officials authorized construction of the Moorburg coal-fired power plant in the port of Hamburg along the Elbe River. The river serves as the migratory route for fish listed in Annex II of the European Union (EU) Habitats Directive.
The Madras High Court determined that the operator of a coal-fired power plant isn't beneficially utilizing fly ash, as required by the fly ash utilization notification of 03/11/2009, among other regulatory violations, which are causing environmental degradation and health hazards that may result in irreparable loss. Accordingly, the court ordered an ad-interim injunction restraining the operator from dumping material that would affect the marsh land in Vallur Village, Tamil Nadu.
Petitioners asked the National Green Tribunal to require the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change to implement restrictions on water consumption and emissions adopted in 2015 for new thermal power plants. The Ministry had requested the Supreme Court grant an extension on the required timeline for implementing the regulation.
Tennessee Clean Water Network v. Tennessee Valley Authority, No. 3:15-cv-00424 (M.D. Tenn. August 4, 2017)
U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee
For decades, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) disposed coal ash from a coal-fired power plant near Gallatin, Tennessee into unlined ponds adjacent to the Cumberland River. Two local organizations filed a case alleging violations of the Clean Water Act.