Over the past 12 months, North Carolina environmental advocates have tried three times to use the federal Clean Water Act to force Duke Energy to clean up their dangerous and unsafe coal ash ponds across our state. Each time their efforts were essentially blocked by Governor McCrory’s administration, which legally intervened in the cases. The state allowed Duke to only pay a small fine but do nothing to actually clean up their unsafe and unlined toxic coal ash dumps. Unfortunately, in early February we paid the price for the weak action by Governor McCrory’s administration when a massive coal ash spill occurred in the Dan River near Eden, NC.
Coal ash ponds are extremely dangerous and not well regulated in North Carolina. Our neighbors in South Carolina have recently taken major steps forward to clean up and handle their highly toxic waste ponds, but the NC industry and regulators have done little to keep North Carolinians safe from coal ash. The bottom line is that it’s time for NC DENR and our state legislators to prioritize our 9 million residents’ safety and not the polluters.
Tell Governor McCrory and our state leaders that North Carolina deserves better and that we should follow South Carolina’s lead and put our coal ash waste in dry, lined storage.