ash ponds

Energy & Environment
2:49 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Environmental Groups File More Coal Ash Lawsuits

The Southern Environmental Law Center's new lawsuits target pollution at the Buck Steam Station in Rowan County (pictured), the Cape Fear Plant, and the H.F. Lee Plant.
Credit Duke Energy

Environmental groups launched new lawsuits today against Duke Energy for pollution from the company’s coal ash ponds in North Carolina, adding more strands to a tangled web of litigation between Duke, environmental groups and state regulators.

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Local News
8:22 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

McCrory Issues Executive Order After Coal Ash Stalls

A form of coal ash, dried out.
Credit Alexia Gyorody / WFAE

After negotiations between the state House and Senate broke down last night, Governor Pat McCrory issued an executive order about coal ash, stored by Duke Energy in ponds near waterways around the state.

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Local News
9:21 am
Tue July 15, 2014

NC Senate Unanimously Opposes House Coal Ash Changes

The North Carolina House and Senate have found another area of disagreement to go along with the budget. One of the legislature’s top priorities—a bill to address coal ash—failed to advance to the governor’s desk Monday night.

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Local News
9:18 am
Thu July 3, 2014

Four Things To Know About The House Coal Ash Bill

Credit Duke Energy

The question about what to do with coal ash around the state came to the North Carolina House floor last night. In a contentious three hour debate, Republican lawmakers defended controversial changes to the bill they received from the Senate and defeated more than a dozen amendments. As the bill nears becoming law, here are four things to know about the latest version.

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Local News
10:18 am
Wed June 25, 2014

Contentious Debate, Unanimous Vote For Coal Ash Bill In NC Senate

The retired Riverbend Steam Station contains four million tons of coal ash and lies on the bank of Mountain Island Lake, Charlotte's drinking water source. The plant is one of four specifically listed for closure in the Senate bill.
Credit Mark Rumsey / WFAE

The North Carolina Senate tentatively approved a bill last night that would determine what happens to the coal ash ponds at all 14 of Duke Energy’s coal plants in the state. The debate was far more rancorous than the final vote.

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Local News
8:24 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Fact Check: Carcinogens In Rowan County Wells Overblown In Recent Reports

Discolored water seeps up on private property near Duke Energy's retired Buck coal plant. Samples turned up high levels of coal ash constituents.
Credit Dot Griffith / Waterkeeper Alliance

A story has been making the rounds this week about a Rowan County community called Dukeville. Environmentalists found toxic heavy metals in drinking water wells near Duke Energy’s retired Buck coal plant, suggesting contamination from coal ash. One metal found in all the wells has generated the most attention.  

“A cancer-causing chemical, called hexavalent chromium,” WCNC reported.

Chromium’s “most toxic form,” an Associated Press investigative story reads.

WFAE’s Ben Bradford joined All Things Considered host Mark Rumsey to discuss problems with these reports.

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Local News
5:50 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

NC Senate Considers Coal Ash As Regulators Find More Leaks

The Dan River coal ash pond spilled at least 30,000 tons of ash in February.
Credit Duke Energy

The state has cited Duke for 11 leaks at the Riverbend, Allen, Marshall, Cliffside, and Buck plants. Bridget Munger, spokeswoman for the state Division of Dam Safety, says they range in size and significance.

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Local News
9:57 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Dan River Update: A Fraction Of Ash Removed

A plume of coal ash flowing into the Dan River, after the failure of a Duke coal ash pond in February.
Credit Appalachian Voices

The Environmental Protection Agency announced it has struck an agreement with Duke Energy to clean up coal ash from the Dan River. The EPA has been overseeing the company’s response, since a storage pond failed at a Duke coal plant in February, spilling at least 30,000 tons of the waste into the river. But the agreement binds Duke to clean up ash as the EPA directs and to reimburse the agency for its costs. EPA officials say that comes to about $800,000 for the past three-plus months of clean-up.

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Local News
4:45 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Airport Or No, Duke Will Remove Riverbend Coal Ash

The primary coal ash pond at Riverbend. The grey bed in the foreground is coal ash.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

Duke Energy officials confirm the company will remove coal ash at the Riverbend power plant above Mountain Island Lake, even though the company’s proposal to send the ash to Charlotte airport is encountering resistance. 

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Local News
6:47 pm
Thu May 1, 2014

It's Déjà Vu At Duke Shareholder Meeting

Protesters chanted outside the Duke Energy corporate headquarters in Uptown.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

Duke Energy held its annual shareholder meeting Thursday. The meeting has developed into something of a tradition: environmental groups use it as a rare opportunity to face, question, and berate the CEO of one of America’s largest power companies. This year, with a new CEO at the helm and Duke under fire for its handling of coal ash, tensions ran higher than usual.

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