Surprised? McCrory’s Coal Ash Proposal Falls Short

Saturday, April 19th, 2014 | Posted by Brian Sewell | No Comments

coal1North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory's poorly planned coal ash proposal is catching flak from environmental groups and legislators in his own party who already planned to push for reform during the upcoming legislative session. [ More ]

Counteracting Coal’s Dirty Tricks

Friday, April 18th, 2014 | Posted by Tom Cormons | 3 Comments

dirty_stream2Last month, we acted quickly to undermine H.R. 2824, a pro-mountaintop removal bill in the U.S. House of Representatives. While we never expected to prevent the bill from passing the anti-environmental House, our efforts helped to make the perils of mountaintop removal the message of the day. [ More ]

North Carolina sides with Duke Energy by appealing coal ash ruling

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 | Posted by Sarah Kellogg | 4 Comments

Buck Steam StationDuke Energy recently appealed a ruling that gave North Carolina authority to force the company to immediately clean up its coal ash pollution across the state. But why would the N.C. Environmental Management Commission join Duke and also appeal the decision? The answer likely has to do with who sits on the commission and how they were appointed. [ More ]

A Moral Call to End Dangerous Coal Ash Storage

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 | Posted by Sarah Kellogg | 1 Comment

MMtownhallLast Monday, concerned citizens packed the pews of a local church in Eden, N.C. The crowd, which was a diverse mixture of age, race and background, assembled for a town hall meeting on coal ash, organized by the North Carolina chapter of the NAACP as a part of the Moral Monday movement. [ More ]

Appalachian Coal Companies Face Major Fines for Clean Water Act Violations

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014 | Posted by Brian Sewell | 2 Comments

iron precipitate in right fork fugate creek below unpermitted fill and pondsTwo recent federal enforcement actions against major Appalachian coal companies, Alpha Natural Resources and Nally & Hamilton, are a positive sign. But can fining coal companies come close to solving the fundamental problem of water pollution that stems from mountaintop removal? [ More ]

Aftermath of NC Coal Ash Spill Still Unfolding

Friday, March 7th, 2014 | Posted by Brian Sewell | No Comments

12310805543_fdedeeee35_b Regardless of the political environment in North Carolina, the Dan River spill was a major event and a reminder of the dangers of coal ash and the consequences of poor enforcement. But with the anti-regulatory renown of North Carolina’s lawmakers and state agencies, it has understandably created a firestorm in Raleigh and around the state of people demanding action that many believe is long overdue. [ More ]

Citizens Deliver Coal Ash Petition to Duke Energy

Friday, February 28th, 2014 | Posted by Sarah Kellogg | 2 Comments

12797909964_793e620d6f_b (1)Tuesday afternoon, more than 150 concerned citizens gathered at Duke Energy’s headquarters in Charlotte, N.C., to demand that the company take action to clean up its toxic coal ash. The event was the result of an amazing collaboration between a variety of environmental and social justice groups from the states affected by the Dan River spill -- North Carolina and Virginia -- as well as national interest groups. [ More ]

West Virginia Patriot Slurry Spill MCHM Test Results

Tuesday, February 25th, 2014 | Posted by Erin Savage | No Comments

PatriotSlurrySpill Preliminary water testing results from the February West Virginia coal slurry spill that blackened six miles of Fields Creek reveal that pollutants included MCHM, the coal-washing chemical that contaminated the drinking water of 300,0000 West Virginians in January. This finding is significant because state environmental officials appeared to be uncertain whether MCHM was involved — it seems that once more, polluting companies withheld important information from the public. [ More ]

Preventable Spills Yield Predictable Apologies

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014 | Posted by Brian Sewell | No Comments

article-2538144-1A987DB600000578-459_634x349 As the cornerstone of crisis P.R., apologies are to be expected after the West Virginia chemical spill and the coal ash spill in North Carolina. But without action, apologies aren’t meaningful — they’re a reflex, a stalling tactic and a reminder of past offenses. In the weeks and months ahead, we should hold polluters responsible by remembering all the acceptances of accountability and the promises to do better that came after the spills. [ More ]

Second Ruptured Pipe Spills Arsenic into Dan River

Friday, February 21st, 2014 | Posted by Sarah Kellogg | 1 Comment

12311117414_2a44f4aff4_b Contaminated water continued to flow into the Dan River from Duke Energy’s coal ash pond in Eden, N.C., this week. On Tuesday, state officials reported that a second pipe running beneath the coal ash pond is leaking water containing arsenic at levels 14 times higher than human health standards. Officials do not know how long the pipe has been leaking, but video footage from inside the pipe shows stains around the leaky seams, indicating that the leak is not new. [ More ]

Coal-related Spills Connect Us All

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 | Posted by Tom Cormons | 4 Comments

moormans_river_va Over the last several weeks, with each report from West Virginia or North Carolina of a coal-related water pollution crisis, I couldn't help but imagine my favorite river, the Moormans, being poisoned by a mysterious chemical called MCHM, choked by toxic coal ash, or fouled by coal slurry. In fact, it is my river that is threatened. And your river, too. But our shared connection to the creeks and rivers running through our lives unites us in the fight to protect our waters, and that’s what gives me hope. [ More ]

KY and NC: Different States, Same Recipe for Lax Clean Water Enforcement

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 | Posted by Eric Chance | 4 Comments

Yesterday there was a hearing in Franklin Circuit Court for our ongoing challenge of a weak settlement that the state of Kentucky reached with Frasure Creek Mining. The settlement is a slap on the wrist that lets them off the hook for thousands of violations of the Clean Water Act, and it bears a striking resemblance to the settlement between North Carolina and Duke Energy that has come under scrutiny after their recent coal ash spill into the Dan River. [ More ]

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