The Tennessee Valley Authority has had a second leak at an impoundment at a coal-fired powerplant, this time from a gypsum pond at its Widows Creek Fossil Plant in northeast Alabama. The incident prompted Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) to announce on Jan. 13 that she plans to seek federal regulation of coal-ash ponds across the U.S. Shifting gypsum dislodged the cap covering a 30-in. pipe once used to drain water from the gypsum pond into an adjacent settling pond, says John Moulton, a TVA spokesman. Once the cap came off, water in the gypsum pond flowed into the settling pond,
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.