(WAND) - Environmental groups are firing back at the Trump Administration, asking the U.S. Court of Appeals to review a petition challenging an EPA rule designed to gut coal ash disposal regulations.
The groups said those regulations provide environmental safeguards for communities located near toxic coal ash waste dumps.
Power plant owners have more time to clean up leaking coal ash disposal sites under changes made by the Trump Administration.
Those who oppose this said this can lead to groundwater being contaminated.
The new rule also allows state-run coal ash permit programs to let states waive groundwater monitoring requirements under certain circumstances.
In August, the D.C. Circuit struck down provisions of the 2015 Coal Ash Rule that exempted impoundments at closed coal plants and allowed coal ash impoundments that are unlined or only underlain by inadequate clay liners to continue to operate.
The EPA now has to draft rules to address more than 100 "legacy" coal ash ponds at retired coal plant sites.
The EPA is also has to to address the closure of over 600 unlined or clay-lined coal ash ponds in response to the court's decision.
The petition was filed by Earthjustice, The Environmental Integrity Project, and Sierra Club, on behalf of Clean Water Action, Hoosier Environmental Council, Prairie Rivers Network, HEAL Utah, and Waterkeeper Alliance.