General James M. Gavin Plant has 76 groundwater monitoring wells, 76 of which have been polluted above federal advisory levels based on samples collected between January 18, 2010 and August 10, 2017. Groundwater at this site contains unsafe levels of mercury, thallium, arsenic, antimony, cadmium, beryllium, lead, selenium, molybdenum, chromium, barium, boron, silver, manganese, nickel, cobalt, strontium, radium, copper, lithium, fluoride, sulfate and nitrate.Site description
General James M. Gavin Power Plant, originally owned by American Electric Power and sold to Lightstone Generation in 2017, is located along the Ohio River in Cheshire, Ohio. The power plant is one of the largest coal-fired plants in the nation with two generating units capable of generating 1300 MW of electricity each. AEP constructed the plant in 1974 and renovated it in the mid-1990s. The plant currently disposes of coal ash in a residual waste landfill and a separate bottom ash pond. The residual waste landfill, which contains flue gas desulfurization wastes including fly ash, covers around 255 acres and fills three valleys. The plant's bottom ash pond is located on the south side of the plant and covers nearly 85 acres. A third disposal area northwest of the currently active landfill, Stingy Creek Dam, is currently closed but received fly ash until 1994. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency categorized both the active landfill and bottom ash pond as having high hazard dams.
In 2002, American Electric Power bought the town of Cheshire for $20 million dollars in order to resolve numerous current citizen complaints and avoid future lawsuits involving potential air pollution from the plant. Gavin Power Plant’s Fly Ash Reservoir, Residual Waste Landfill and Bottom Ash Complex are all regulated under the CCR-rule. You can find the industry reported data here. For more information on Gavin Power Plant, see EIP’s 2019 National Coal Ash report: Coal’s Poisonous Legacy.