September 9, 2010 - Near one power plant in New Mexico, sheep and cattle ranchers have reported losing hundreds of livestock who drank polluted groundwater. In a Montana town, people have been sickened by drinking water contaminated with high levels of sulfate and boron, the same metals discharged into groundwater by a nearby plant.
And in McAdoo, Pa., federal health officials have confirmed a rare bone marrow cancer cluster in a town near several plants and a waste dump, though federal officials haven't either confirmed or denied a link between the cancers and the plants.
These aren't incidents taking place close to natural gas drilling sites using new hydraulic fracturing techniques, but rather are near decades-old and still functioning coal-fired power plants, which provide roughly half of America's electricity.
One Tompkins County coal-based power plant, AES Cayuga in Lansing, was among 39 across the country cited by three national environmental groups in a new report on groundwater pollution caused by coal ash.