Ash spill mediation gets more time

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By Damon Lawrence

Another request for additional time to mediate in TVA ash spill litigation has been granted by Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas Varlan.
A dike failure early on Dec. 22, 2008, at TVA’s Kingston Fossil Plant released more than 5 million cubic yards of ash into the environment.
Last August, Varlan determined TVA caused the disaster. The litigation includes more than 60 cases and involves more than 800 plaintiffs. Varlan ordered the sides to mediate last November.
In March, TVA and the plaintiffs asked for an additional 120 days to mediate, which Varlan granted. The latest joint request was filed on July 11. Varlan’s order granting a 75-day extension was filed the next day. 
“Because of the parties’ agreement and the complexity of this litigation, the court hereby grants the motion,” Varlan’s order said.