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A visit with people affected by the largest industrial spill in American history

Editor’s Note: Expedition Blue Planet, led by Jacques Cousteau’s granddaughter Alexandra Cousteau, is traveling 14,500 miles of road over 138 days to investigate and film some of North America’s most pressing water-use and management stories. Each week expedition members will file a dispatch from the field for Scientific American until the expedition concludes on November [...]

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Beyond the Light Switch: What to do about coal ash?

The aftermath of burning a mountain of coal isn’t pretty. It’s not just the ash itself; it’s also the toxic elements that have been purified by fire out of the "fossilized sunshine." Those toxic elements come along for the ride when the coal ash spills, like it did near Kingston, Tenn., on December 22, 2008. [...]

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