EPA

Local News
7:41 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Dan River Dredging Finished, Less Than 10 Percent Of Ash Removed

A plume of coal ash swirls in the Dan River, during the February spill.
Credit 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.

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Local News
9:24 am
Tue June 3, 2014

What New EPA Proposed Rule On Power Plant Emissions Means For NC

EPA

North Carolina will have to reduce its rate of carbon emissions from power plants 40 percent to comply with a rule the Environmental Protection Agency proposed Monday. That's among the larger reductions the EPA is calling for in its push to reduce emissions.

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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
9:59 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Little Ash Removed From Dan River

Credit Appalachian Voices

Two weeks since Duke Energy crews plugged a broken stormwater pipe, stopping a leak of coal ash into the Dan River, little progress has been made on removing that ash from the river.

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Local News
2:26 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

New Duke Estimate Shows Less Ash Spilled Into Dan River

Workers in yellow jackets work to seal the broken pipe at the Dan River coal plant last week.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

A revised estimate shows less coal ash than previously thought leaked into the Dan River during a spill last week. Duke Energy now says less than 40,000 tons spilled into the river.

When that stormwater pipe burst ten days ago under a Duke Energy ash pond, the company estimated up to 82,000 tons of ash had spilled into the river, or about 8 percent of the entire pond. Water and ash continued to leak throughout the week as crews worked to plug the pipe. Regulators and Duke promised an updated number once the leak was sealed, which occurred early Saturday morning.

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Local News
11:08 pm
Sat February 8, 2014

Arsenic Levels In Dan River Were Over NC Standard

Scientists collect water samples from the Dan River following a coal ash spill from a retired Duke Energy plant.
Credit NC DENR

Officials continue to monitor water quality near the site of a coal ash spill from a retired Duke Energy plant on the Dan River in northern North Carolina. WFAE's Duncan McFadyen reports arsenic levels exceeded a state standard earlier this week.
 


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Local News
6:17 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Crews Plug Dan River Coal Ash Leak

Duke Energy workers installed a crane to clear a path to the broken pipe under an ash pond at the Dan River coal plant in Eden, N.C.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

**UPDATE 2/8/2014 10:30 a.m.**

As of Saturday morning, Duke Energy workers have installed a permanent plug at the end of the wastewater pipe. A company representative says the "concrete-like substance" is curing. To keep pressure off of the plug as it cures, wastewater is still being pumped from the pipe and back into the coal ash pond. Crews are still trying to reach the broken part of the pipe under the ash pond. When they do, they plan to fill the full length of the pipe with the same concrete-like material.

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Workers have temporarily stopped the flow of ash and water into the Dan River on the border of North Carolina and Virginia, and plan to permanently patch the leak overnight.


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Science & Environment
12:19 pm
Sat January 18, 2014

NC Sues EPA Over Air Quality Standards

The EPA regulates particle pollution, which can be chemicals, acids, metals, soil and dust particles. Cars, refineries, factories and power plants all emit particulate matter.
Credit NCDOT

The state of North Carolina is suing the EPA. State environmental regulators are arguing that federal air quality standards are too stringent and should be loosened.


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Science & Environment
3:56 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Court Orders EPA To Review Coal Ash Regulations

A federal judge has ordered the EPA to decide whether the byproduct from burning coal is a hazardous material that must be regulated. That decision will have big implications for North Carolina.


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Environment
12:35 am
Thu October 3, 2013

PCB Worries Put SC Sludge Fertilizer On Hold

An illustration of the wastewater treatment process in Charlotte.
Credit Betsy Hill/Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities Department

There's a lot of sludge in South Carolina that's destined for landfills. That's because the sludge produced from some wastewater treatment plants has tested positive for PCBs.

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