NCDENR

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
10:08 am
Mon April 28, 2014

New Coal Ash Proposal, Same As The Old One?

A law proposed by Governor Pat McCrory would require coal ash be removed from Riverbend Steam Station, which sits above Charlotte's drinking water intake on Mountain Island Lake.
Credit Duke Energy

Two weeks ago, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory released a plan, billed as a solution for the coal ash ponds leaking polluted water into rivers and lakes around North Carolina. But environmental groups are crying foul—because the governor’s proposal resembles a previous, widely-criticized agreement between the administration and Duke Energy, which was thrown out after a coal ash pond collapsed into the Dan River in February.


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Local News
1:25 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Duke Energy, State Officials Portray Coal Ash Removal As Lengthy, Costly

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

State regulators and Duke Energy officials poured cold water on proposals by environmental groups about what to do with more than 100 millions of tons of coal ash, describing total removal of the ash as lengthy and costly.


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Local News
12:37 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

McCrory Announces Plan To Address Coal Ash; Judge Says 'Now'

Duke Energy's Riverbend steam station sits on the bank of Mountain Island Lake near Charlotte.
Credit Mark Rumsey / WFAE

Two big developments occurred Wednesday in an ongoing fight over how North Carolina utilities store the leftover byproduct of coal. Governor Pat McCrory released a plan of action to stop the current storage in unlined ponds from leaking into state waterways. Then, a judge decreed clean-up efforts to stop those leaks must begin immediately, even as Duke Energy and a state committee appeal.


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Local News
6:52 am
Wed April 9, 2014

Regulators, Duke, Environmentalists In 3-Way Fight Over Coal Ash

Coal ash separates from sediment scooped from the bed of the Dan River days after the spill.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

The failure of a Duke Energy coal ash pond two months ago not only spilled at least 30,000 tons of the waste into the Dan River, it spurred new scrutiny of how Duke handles the waste, what chemicals are flowing into North Carolina waters, and how the state oversees all of it. It has led to numerous revelations about leaks or cracks in other ponds, wastewater pumped into rivers, lawsuits, and federal investigations. WFAE’s Ben Bradford joined Morning Edition host Kevin Kniestedt to discuss the latest.


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Local News
10:02 am
Fri March 28, 2014

Duke Pushes Back Against State Environment Officials

A broken stormwater pipe spills coal ash into the Dan River the week of February 2nd.
Credit Appalachian Voices

Duke Energy is denying accusations by regulators that it allows contaminated storm water to run unauthorized from its coal plants. It’s the first major pushback from Duke against state regulators after the Dan River spill—but not the last, the company says.


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Local News
7:24 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

State: Duke Pumped Coal Ash Water Into Cape Fear Tributary

An environmental group, the Waterkeeper Alliance, took aerial photos of Duke Energy pumping water from an ash pond into a tributary of the Cape Fear River (bottom left).
Credit Waterkeeper Alliance

While a broken pipe was spilling at least 30,000 tons of coal ash into the Dan River, Duke crews were pumping coal ash wastewater into another river—the Cape Fear. Environmental officials accuse Duke of violating its permit and hiding information from regulators. Environmental groups blame the regulators.


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Local News
7:54 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Coal Ash Could Help Airport, But Waste Ponds Have More Pollutants

A diagram of the coal ash and its encapsulation, as Duke and Charah are proposing at CLT.
Credit Charah

Duke Energy says it will remove the coal ash controversially stored on the banks of Mountain Island Lake. That has long been a goal of environmental groups. After that announcement, Duke quickly offered a proposal to the City of Charlotte: use the ash at Charlotte-Douglas airport, as fill for land, for new runways, taxiways, and other projects. That proposal from Duke could be a cheap option for an airport whose calling card is its low cost.

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Local News
7:03 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Duke Proposes Removing Coal Ash Stored Along Mountain Island Lake

Duke has proposed closing the Riverbend Steam Station's ash ponds and moving the ash to lined landfills.
Credit Duke Energy

Duke Energy has announced plans to close many coal ash ponds across the state, including at the Riverbend Steam Station on Mountain Island Lake, after at least 30,000 tons of the toxic byproduct from burning coal spilled into the Dan River last month. City officials say Duke and another company have proposed that the airport use the ash.

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Local News
9:17 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Judge Rules State Must Halt Duke Energy Ash Pond Leaks

An aerial view of the Dan River power plant, including an ash pond that spilled at least 30,000 tons of coal ash into the river.
Credit Duke Energy

A North Carolina judge has ruled that state environmental regulators must immediately stop groundwater contamination from coal ash ponds at all 14 of Duke Energy’s coal-fired power plants. The decision is a victory for environmental groups opposed to how Duke Energy stores the leftover byproduct from burnt coal at its power plants, but it does not resolve what will happen to the ash.

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