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MONROE COUNTY, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – People in one Middle Georgia county are fighting for clean water.
Juliette residents are urging elected officials to pass two bills that would regulate coal ash storage.
Resident Mike Pless, along with dozens of others, are fed up with the city’s contaminated water.
Residents fear their drinking water is polluted with coal ash.
“Two of my neighbors have already tested extremely positive and hot to hexavalent chromium arsenic Boron and several other components,” resident Paul Lindner said.
Georgia Power built the Robert W. Scherer Power Plant in Juliette in the 1980s. For years, the plant brought in money and jobs, but it also brought in an ash pond used to dispose of coal products from the plant.
“The heavy metals that are leaching out of that ash and going down into that aquifer right below Georgia Power Pond,” Pless explained.
The city of Juliette is considered a rural area and has no water lines. Citizens must use water wells to get water, leaving them vulnerable to illnesses.
Residents are urging the passage of Georgia House Bill 756 and Senate Bill 297, which would require ash ponds in Georgia to have a protective lining underneath.
A Georgia Power representative tells 41NBC the company is in full compliance with local, state and federal laws and that the company constantly monitors the wells but says there is no evidence to show the water is making people sick.