Charlotte Douglas International Airport doesn’t want coal ash from a Duke Energy power plant buried under a planned new runway or other airport infrastructure, dealing a potential blow to a proposal that would move millions of tons of ash from Mountain Island Lake to the airport.
Interim Aviation Director Brent Cagle said there’s uncertainty about how coal ash would work as a fill material under a runway, where it could be subjected to the pounding of hundreds of jets a day at Charlotte Douglas, the sixth-busiest airport in the world.
“We do have concerns about placement of coal ash under airfield infrastructure,” Cagle said. “We believe those concerns, or the risk associated with doing that, are too great in the case of Charlotte to warrant pursuing coal ash under the airfield.”
- Duke, city came close to airport ash plan in 2013
- McCrory expects ash plan to be part of legislation
- Duke: Move coal ash to airport
The airport’s reluctance creates more uncertainty about where millions of tons of coal ash in unlined pits near Charlotte will ultimately end up. Charlotte-based Duke has been under pressure to clean up its coal ash ponds since a Feb. 2 spill sent thousands of tons of the toxic material spilling into the Dan River.
An airplane lands at Asheville Regional Airport. To the right is the Duke Energy Asheville Plant. At the bottom is the ash fill project under construction at Asheville Regional Airport. Airplane hangars and taxiways will be built at this area in the future.