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Upcoming Events

June 29, 12-3 PM Bishop Barber & The Poor People’s Campaign Stand Against Environmental Injustices in Northampton County! For more info, view the flier HERE

Ongoing — Help Robie and Dwayne Goins fight the ACP! Consider supporting the Goins brothers by sending a check to Clean Water for NC at 1070 Tunnel Rd., Bldg. 1, Ste. 4, Asheville, NC 28805. Please include “Robeson Support Fund” in the memo line.

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Bishop William J. Barber, II & The Poor People's Campaign in Northampton County!

Register on Eventbrite

To download the flier, click HERE

Standing Together Against Coal Ash Injustice

The news was announced on April Fools Day, but it was no joke! DEQ (The NC Dept. of Environmental Quality), backed by strong science, stood with coal ash communities in their decision to order Duke Energy to excavate coal ash from every remaining site in the state and move it into lined landfills. Duke Energy wasted no time in rebuking DEQ, speaking scathingly
about the ordered clean-up, and leveraging its power to safeguard its own interests, but NC residents, businesses, and organizations, will not be standing down.

On April 2, Senate Bill 559 backed by Duke Energy was introduced in the NC legislature. Fronted as a storm recovery bill, it would allow the utility to request multi-year rate increases up to five years ahead of time for long-term projects (i.e. coal ash cleanup) and bypass the hurdle of annual rate cases with the NC Utilities Commission. A report by a state social justice advocacy group revealed many of the bill’s sponsors had received a surge of campaign donations from Duke in 2018. The bill soared through the NC Senate and passed its first reading in the House of Representatives in early May. In response to Duke’s rate bill, NC businesses including Google and Walmart, have come out against it, concerned that it could “lead to unchecked electricity rate increases.” Additionally, NC Attorney General, Josh Stein, filed an appeal to overturn a previous decision to allow Duke to collect recovery costs from customers for coal ash cleanup. The resistance against the utility’s potential rate increase is mounting as news outlets publish letters from concerned residents and advocates, demanding that Duke and its shareholders pay to clean up their own mess.

Meanwhile, in mid-April Duke Energy took a more direct approach to challenging the DEQ decision by filing an appeal. In it, they challenge DEQ’s authority to order full excavation and claimed the department was not looking out for ratepayers. Duke brandished a new, $10 billion estimate for coal ash cleanup by the 2029 deadline (twice the previous estimate in their closure proposals) and cited concerns for their customers about rate increases. They claimed that DEQ stepped over the line by choosing a closure method for all sites based on the idea that excavation is “more protective” rather than just “protective” enough. But with unlined coal ash pits sitting below the groundwater table and historic rainfall events on the rise, simply removing excess water from the ash and capping it was no guarantee contaminants wouldn’t find their way into drinking water supplies. Governor Cooper and Secretary Regan, as well as some of Duke Energy’s own shareholders, are standing by DEQ’s decision to protect communities.

Duke spokespeople are responding heatedly to all negative press to reduce the PR damage, but their actions clearly speak louder than words. As they repeat their script about ratepayer concerns, they await approval on a bill that would give them greater power to increase rates. In South Carolina, ratepayers came out against a massive rate increase for coal ash cleanup and succeeded in greatly reducing the amount the utility could collect. Duke responded by threatening to pull future investments in customer services in the state. NC coal ash impacted communities and advocates understand what’s at stake and will not be intimidated by such tactics. We are watching and listening, and we won’t be backing down. We will continue to stand together against coal ash injustice.

Victory for Coal Ash Communities Across NC!

You did it! You spoke out against injustice, and won!

On April 1st, DEQ announced that communities across North Carolina will have toxic coal ash removed from unlined, leaking pits and placed in lined landfills. Since the Dan River spill 5 years ago, impacted coal ash community members and advocates have been coming together to demand cleanup of the coal ash that Duke Energy dumped in their communities.

There have been countless letters written, phone calls made, and comments sent asking the NC Department of Environmental Quality to make Duke clean up their mess. Most recently in January, over a thousand people took time out of their own busy schedules to show up one more time at public meetings to raise their voices and urge DEQ to fulfill their mission to protect communities and the environment. And this time, THEY LISTENED!

We at Clean Water for North Carolina wish to express our sincere gratitude to all who have come together to make this historic moment of celebration possible. We thank the state officials who acknowledged the dangers of leaving coal ash sitting in groundwater where it would continue to pollute. We thank the many advocates, neighbors, and concerned citizens across the state who helped to spread the word and provide support to the communities who wished to organize for justice.

But most of all, we honor the resilience of folks who have been most directly impacted by the tragedy of pollution in their own neighborhoods. This victory is yours, and we celebrate with you! We will continue to stand by your side and echo your demands for justice!

Forward in solidarity!

Clean Water for NC is a member of the Alliance of Carolinians Together (ACT) Against Coal Ash, which has worked to help protect coal ash neighbor communities across the state.

DEQ Public Meetings on Final Closure of 6 Major NC Coal Ash Sites

As DEQ announced the ranking of 6 large coal ash sites in NC as “low risk” on Nov. 14th, they also announced public “meetings” to give the public a chance to give input on closure plans for these sites. We know that Duke wants to close these sites by “Capping in Place” to save in cleanup costs, but that will only leave the ash looming over communities and leaching toxic contaminants into groundwater, dropping the leash on many major federal coal ash violations.  Clean Water for NC, along with the ACT Against Coal Ash Alliance, calls for complete excavation of ash at these sites and removal to lined, above ground sites on Duke Energy property!

Come out to one or more of these public information meetings to demand that DEQ holds Duke accountable for the toxic coal ash waste in our communities!  DEQ information here.

The meetings will be held at 6:00 p.m. on the following dates:

Jan. 10 Belew’s Creek Steem Station meeting: Walnut Cove Elem. School
Address: 1211 Walnut Cove School Road, Walnut Cove

Jan. 15 Mayo Power Station meeting: Mayo Park Environmental Education Comm. Center
Address: 1013 Neal’s Store Rd, Roxboro

Jan. 17 Marshall Steam Station meeting: Sherrills Ford Elementary School
Address: 8103 Sherrills Ford Rd, Sherrills Ford

Jan. 22 Cliffside Steam Station meeting: Chase High School
Address: 1603 Chase High Rd, Forest City

Jan. 24 Roxboro Power Station meetingPerson High School
 Address: 1010 Ridge Rd, Roxboro

Jan. 29 mtg on Allen Steam StationStuart Cramer High School
Address: 101 Lakewood Road, Belmont