Bay Journal

Topics: Pollution

PA power plant accused of illegal discharges into Susquehanna tributary

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A Pennsylvania power plant — accused of being one of the most polluting plants in the nation and the recipient of several fines for fish kills — is facing legal challenges once again. The Brunner Island power plant, located along the Susquehanna River just south of Harrisburg, may be the target of a lawsuit alleging that the plant is illegally discharging contaminants from coal ash into a Susquehanna tributary. 

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About Pollution

Nutrient pollution, the nitrogen and phosphorus that originates from farms, wastewater treatment plants, stormwater runoff and air pollution, is a major source of pollution to the Chesapeake. In the Bay, they spur growth of algae blooms which block sunlight needed by important underwater grass beds. When the algae dies, they are decomposed in a process that depletes the water of oxygen needed by other species.

Sediment eroded from the land and streambanks degrades stream health and reduces water clarity. Toxins and other chemical contaminants also pose a direct threat to fish throughout the Bay and its watershed.

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