Duke dealt largest federal criminal fine in NC history for coal ash crimes

On May 14, 2015, Duke Energy pled guilty to 9 criminal misdemeanor violations of the Clean Water Act. The charges stemmed from a widened investigation, after the Dan River disaster, that found violations at Duke-owned facilities in Buncombe, Chatham, Wayne and Gaston Counties in North Carolina. Duke negotiated a plea bargain that included $68 million [...]

Citizens slam Duke for coal ash pollution at shareholder meeting

On May 7, Duke held its annual shareholder meeting outside its headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina. Like most publicly-traded corporations, Duke tried to put on a “dog and pony show” to excite investors and financial media about the prospects for Duke’s future. Instead, Duke’s CEO Lynn Good was interrupted by vocal protests and forced again [...]

Duke fines for coal ash pile up, but the ash piles don’t shrink

Duke Energy is under a lot of pressure these days. Coal ash has become a serious financial and public relations liability for the corporation, yet so far, the nation’s largest utility isn’t planning to adequately clean up its mess across the Southeast. The impacts of coal ash on communities and waterways continue, and the price [...]

Earthjustice: BIG COAL CAN’T STOP, WON’T STOP

Lisa Evans is an attorney specializing in hazardous waste law. Ms. Evans has been active in hazardous waste litigation and advocacy for over 25 years. Since 2006, she has been a senior administrative counsel for Earthjustice. Lisa’s blog was originally posted here. ************************* You have to acknowledge the tenacity of Rep. David McKinley (R, WV). [...]

Duke Energy expecting $100 million fine in federal coal ash investigation

In a plea deal to match other major environmental disaster plea deals, Duke Energy appears to be expecting fines around $100 million to resolve, in part, the federal criminal investigation initiated after the massive Dan River coal ash disaster in 2014. Official announcements are pending in the days to come about the criminal charges, but [...]

Kingston Residents Gather and Call for New Public Hearing on Proposed Coal Ash Landfill

To read supplemental comments on the proposed landfill submitted by environmental groups Feb. 9, 2015, click here. Thursday night, February 5th, more than 30 local residents of Kingston, TN joined together at the Kingston Community Center to attend an event hosted by Statewide Organizing for Community eMpowerment (SOCM).  The purpose of the event was to [...]

1 year since Dan River: 3 ways to prevent another coal ash disaster

One year ago today, Duke Energy dumped nearly 39,000 tons of coal ash and 24 million gallons of wastewater into the Dan River near Eden, North Carolina. That’s a total of 140,000 tons of toxic waste and wastewater combined into the sensitive eco-system of the Dan River. By the end of two weeks, a dark grey [...]

TVA Approves Shawnee Pollution Controls Instead of Retirement

On Dec. 30, during a special session of the Tennessee Valley Authority board, a decision was finalized to invest significant resources into retrofitting two units at its older, Shawnee coal plant in Paducah, KY. As explained in an earlier SACE blog, TVA had to make a decision concerning Shawnee Units 1 and 4 by December [...]

Decisions, Decisions at TVA’s Shawnee Coal Plant

As 2014 draws to a close, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has been busy working on making an important decision at its Shawnee coal plant in Paducah, KY.  December 9th marked the end of the public comment period for TVA’s draft Environmental Assessment (EA) to determine whether or not it should retire or retrofit two coal [...]

Countdown to coal ash rules from EPA

We are exactly 9 days away from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) official release of final rules for coal ash regulation that have been in the works ever since the catastrophic Kingston disaster of 2008. Since then, it has taken almost 6 years and countless efforts by citizens and advocates to sound the alarm on [...]