Energy/Environment

hyperion327 / Flickr

On Friday, state senators passed the Regulatory Reform Act. It covers everything from oyster permits to Venus flytraps. It also includes a few sections on coastal management and isolated wetlands that environmental advocates say they're concerned about.  


Duke Energy/Flickr

Duke Energy earned more than $600 million in its second quarter this year, 80 percent more than last year.


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.


Ben Bradford / WFAE

North Carolina’s environment agency is objecting to a proposed federal rule that would limit greenhouse gas emissions from the state’s power plants. 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is currently hearing public comments on the proposed rule, the Obama administration’s largest effort directed toward climate change.


Jeff Willhelm / 2008 Observer File Photo

As part of a flurry of late night activity, the North Carolina Senate planned a vote on one of its top priorities, coal ash, and what to do about one hundred million tons of the waste, which is currently stored in ponds next to waterways around the state. But, the measure never made it to a vote.


The oil and gas extraction technique known as fracking is not yet legal in North Carolina, but a Pennsylvania company is seeking to buy the rights to oil and gas from landowners in Durham County. The state Department of Justice has told it to stop.


Catawba Riverkeeper

North Carolina’s annual farm bill addresses fertilizer regulations, landscapers , and even the legal definition of “planting and harvesting season.” But environmental groups say one provision unfairly shields the industry from public scrutiny, while the industry argues it protects from overzealous watchdogs.


Ben Bradford / WFAE

In the span of five years, the solar industry in North Carolina has grown from nearly non-existent to fourth-largest in the nation, behind California, Arizona, and New Jersey. The pace is accelerating, with solar capacity set to more than double in the state, at least this year. The state’s powerful electric utilities are pushing changes that could blot out the industry in North Carolina.


Appalachian Voices

Duke Energy announced it has finished actively cleaning coal ash from the Dan River, a little less than six months after a massive spill turned the water gray. The bulk of the ash will remain in the river.

Between 30,000 and 40,000 tons of ash, containing heavy metals including arsenic and lead, spilled into the river in February. It flowed down the Dan River, collecting in pockets on its banks and bottom.

Duke has dredged three main areas—next to the spill site, from the water treatment plants of cities downriver, and, the largest, near a dam outside the city of Danville.

The controversial oil and gas extraction process known as fracking took another step toward legalization in North Carolina Tuesday.

The state formally opened a public comment period, a time when anyone can officially weigh in on the rules that will ultimately govern fracking.

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