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North Dakota researcher: Coal ash can be used safely as "green" product, used in carpet, concrete, bowling balls

January 9, 2009View for printing

Researchers at the University of North Dakota , who have been studying coal ash for decades, hope a billion-gallon sludge spill in Tennessee won't set back efforts to promote the ash as an environmentally friendly product.

UND's Energy and Environmental Research Center says coal ash has been safely used in products ranging from concrete and carpet to bowling balls.

An Associated Press analysis of federal Energy Department data from 2005, the most recent available, found 156 coal-fired power plants store ash in surface ponds similar to one that ruptured last month in Tennessee.

James Macpherson, Associated Press Writer

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