May 26, 2022 @ 12:00 pm
Facebook Live

On Thursday, May 26th at 11 AM CT/Noon ET, join Just Transition Northwest Indiana and Appalachian Voices for a special Facebook Live event ahead of the landmark June 1st decision that will determine whether the perpetrators of the worst coal ash spill in US history are held accountable. #RememberKingston 

Just Transition Northwest Indiana will be joined by Appalachian Voices and the fearless wives of the Kingston, TN workers to tell their story, demand justice, and discuss the precedent of this legal case for other coal-affected, environmental justice communities across the country including Michigan City, Indiana, where a catastrophic coal ash spill into Lake Michigan at NIPSCO’s coal plant is seemingly inevitable.

The backstory:

In 2008, a dike ruptured at the Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA) Kingston Fossil Plant in East Tennessee and released more than one billion gallons of toxic coal ash slurry into nearby rivers and land, marking the biggest industrial spill in the country. Following the cleanup, hundreds of workers fell ill from lung diseases, blood and brain cancers, and other ailments after being deprived of proper protective equipment. More than 50 workers have since lost their lives. Now, these workers’ and their families’ decades-long pursuit for justice hits a turning point as the Tennessee Supreme Court hears a case that could be a linchpin for their and future worker safety cases. The hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, June 1st.

Context on the TN Supreme Court Case:

Jacobs Engineering, the contractor that employed the workers during the cleanup, has asked the TN Supreme Court to compare apples to oranges: requesting that coal ash be classified as silica and mixed dust, and for the workers to prove very specific injuries under the Tennessee Silica Claims Priorities Act that do not reflect the range of injuries that result from coal fly ash exposure. If the court rules in favor of Jacobs on this issue, it will make it virtually impossible to hold polluters accountable and directly harm the families of workers whose lives were derailed by corporate polluters.