Our View: Coal Ash Cleanup Bill Far Short of Our Needs

This guest post originally appeared in the Fayetteville Observer’s Opinion Editorials on July 5, 2014. You can access the original piece here. The North Carolina General Assembly is working quickly to pass the Coal Ash Management Act of 2014, which has been further weakened by the House and fails to protect North Carolina communities and [...]

Duke Energy’s Commitment to Overspend on Coal Plants

Duke Energy is banking on charging customers in the Carolinas an estimated $7.7 billion just to keep its existing fleet of coal plants running. For at least thirteen of those units (at 5 plants), however, it is pretty clear that the additional investment is not worthwhile, and Duke Energy should change its plans. What’s worse, [...]

Remembering TN’s Coal Ash Problems After NC’s Dan River Disaster

In the wake of the recent coal ash disaster at Duke Energy’s Dan River plant in Eden, NC, environmental groups have become increasingly concerned with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s (TDEC) handling of toxic coal ash within the state. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Tennessee’s coal ash impoundments can hold up [...]

Join Hands to Protect Our Treasured Places!

For the past four years, there has been one annual worldwide grassroots event that has championed the cause of clean energy as a replacement to risky fossil fuels: Hands Across the Sand. Since 2010, Hands events have brought thousands of communities together to stand up for their most treasured places in all 50 states and [...]

New Southeast EPA Administrator Faces Challenges Ahead

In the first month of 2014, the Environmental Protection Agency appointed Heather McTeer Toney as the new Region 4 Administrator. The former Regional Administrator, Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming, left to become chief of staff for EPA’s new chief administrator Gina McCarthy. Mrs. Toney, a private-sector attorney by trade, served as the first woman and first African-American mayor [...]

Dan River spill spurs major ash clean up orders

Over a month has passed since a broken stormwater pipe under coal ash lagoons at Duke Energy’s retired Dan River power station began spewing 140,000 tons of toxic waste into the Dan River*. The nation’s 3rd largest coal ash disaster has been fraught with scandal and news about the intimate relationship between Duke Energy and NC Department [...]

Clean Coal: A Costly Chimera?

The subject of coal has been dominating news lately.  After being unregulated for decades, the Environmental Protection Agency is finally crafting regulations to limit carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants.  Currently, proposed carbon emission regulations for new power plants are open for public comment and regulations for emissions from existing power plants are due out [...]

Duke Energy: This is Not Leadership

Shorter versions of this oped were originally published in North Carolina in the Charlotte Observer on February 10, 2014 (found here) and in Florida in the Tampa Bay Times on February 11, 2014 (found here). When Duke Energy merged with Progress Energy to form the largest utility company in the United States, our organization wondered [...]

Dan River Coal Ash Disaster Near Eden, North Carolina

Since the 2008 Kingston coal ash disaster we have often asked “when and where will it happen again”?  On Monday, February 3, 2014 we got an unfortunate answer when a stormwater pipe (that Duke apparently didn’t know was there) burst beneath a coal ash impoundment at Duke Energy’s retired Dan River Power Station near Eden, North Carolina. [...]

Sutton Case Study: Coal Ash Harms and Kills Fish

A new study released on December 3, 2013, shows that toxic coal ash from Duke Energy’s L.V. Sutton Power Station is seriously harming fish and wildlife in Lake Sutton, a popular fishing destination near Wilmington, NC. Unfortunately, this is just the most recent addition to the growing body of evidence that coal ash is leaking into [...]