Forty years ago, on May 17, 1983, our little 'ole tabloid Appalachian Observer newspaper in Clinton, Tennessee got the Oak Ridge mercury pollution released and declassified by the U.S. Department of Energy. Much of the 4.2 million pounds of "lost" mercury wound up in unprotected Union Carbide Y-12 workers' lungs and brains. More remains in creeks, groundwater and downstreams, some of it uncovered as a result of the TVA's Kingston powerplant coal ash spill disaster.
Dominated by two federal agencies (TVA and the Department of Energy), Northeast Tennessee is not unlike a "cask tapped at both ends," as Alexander Hamilton said of New Jersey (with New York at one end and Philadelphia at the other.
People are dead and dying as a result.
From Grist/Daily Yonder: