• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 24s

New report sheds light on secret of coal dust in Seward

By Dave Leval Photojournalist: Jacob Curtis - 8:40 PM July 17, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

Three environmental groups say there’s a dirty secret about coal you need to know about.

Pamela Miller, who runs the Anchorage-based Alaska Community Action on Toxics, is helping lead the effort to make Seward a safer place to live.

Alaska Community Action on Toxics is one of three environmental groups that studied what they believe is the source of a problem.

The Seward coal loading facility is where the Alaska Railroad brings coal to be loaded onto cargo ships. The environmental groups claim dust generated from the piles as they are moved is creating a big mess, and not just at the facility.

“Coal dust is seen on surfaces and in homes, and in schools and neighborhoods around Seward,” Miller said.

The dust is also creating unseen problems, she said.

“The pollutants can also exacerbate and can cause asthma,” Miller said. “They can cause cardiopulmonary problems in people, they can cause long-term lung damage, and even premature deaths.”

The new report contradicts an older study, which found pollution levels well below federal standards.

The earlier investigation did not take high winds and loading operations into account, Miller said. Those factors can help spread the dust anywhere the cars roll.

The rail cars roll through Anchorage on their way to Seward. Critics point out they have not done a study of that coal to determine the impact on our health.

Miller is among those who want the rail company to clean up its act in Seward before it hauls coal from other portions of the state.

A spokesperson with the Alaska Railroad declined to comment on the report because of pending litigation against the railroad company filed by the environmental groups.

Latest Stories

  • Lifestyle

    Mylan says it will expand programs that lower EpiPen costs

    by Associated Press on Aug 25, 6:38

    Mylan, now in the crosshairs over severe price hikes for its EpiPen, says it will expand programs that lower out-of-pocket costs by as much as half. Mylan N.V. said Thursday that the patient cost will be reduced through a savings card that will cover up to $300 for an EpiPen 2-Pak. The company said it’s […]

  • News

    Kenai Peninsula Borough will continue invocations following appeal to Satan

    by Associated Press on Aug 25, 6:33

    The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly has decided to continue allowing religious groups to offer invocations at its meetings after an invocation from a member of the Satanic Temple prompted a call for change. Iris Fontana encouraged attendees of an Aug. 9 meeting to “embrace the Luciferian impulse to eat of the tree of knowledge.” She […]

  • Lifestyle

    What not to say to help your teen lose weight

    by Ashley Welch / CBS News on Aug 24, 21:50

    If you want your teen to lose weight, the American Academy of Pediatrics has some advice: Don’t tell them that. Doing so may raise their risk of developing unhealthy habits or even an eating disorder, the AAP states in new recommendations published online this week. “The focus should be on a healthy lifestyle rather than on weight,” the […]

  • News

    Italy earthquake described as ‘Dante’s Inferno’ kills dozens

    by CBS/AP on Aug 24, 21:46

    Rescue crews using bulldozers and their bare hands raced to dig out survivors from a strong earthquake that reduced three central Italian towns to rubble Wednesday. The death toll stood at 159, but the number of dead and missing was uncertain given the thousands of vacationers in the area for summer’s final days. Residents wakened […]

  • News

    District hopes new approach to active shooter will save young lives

    by Lauren Maxwell on Aug 24, 21:28

    The Anchorage School District is changing the way it would respond if an active shooter entered a school, according to Superintendent Deena Paramo. Paramo is hoping the new advice for students and staff will help save lives in an emergency situation. Paramo said up until this point, the district has always used a lockdown approach. […]

  • News

    President Obama honors 4 Alaska teachers

    by Shannon Ballard on Aug 24, 20:30

    The White House is honoring more than 200 math and science teachers, including four from Alaska: · Catherine Walker - Romig Middle School, Science · Joey Jigliotti - Rogers Park Elementary School, Science · MaryLee Tung - Sand Lake Elementary School, Mathematics · Christopher Benshoof - Lathrop High School, Mathematics The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching is the highest […]

  • News

    State plans to take over gasline project, still unsure how to pay for it

    by Liz Raines on Aug 24, 20:22

    The state is moving forward with plans to take over the Alaska liquefied natural gas pipeline project (AKLNG), one of the most expensive of its kind in the world, after its three oil company partners — ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, and BP — expressed hesitancy to move under current market conditions. The project carries a price tag […]

  • Crime

    Charging documents: Guns, bullets found in and around vehicle in fatal crash

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Aug 24, 18:44

    Charging documents released at the arraignment of 19-year-old Kuach C. Kuach Wednesday revealed new details about a crash he was involved in that claimed the life of another man. In the early morning hours of Aug. 5, police responded to a two-vehicle collision on Fifth Avenue. Kuach, who’d suffered a gunshot wound, was found at […]