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NC Attorney General Files New Lawsuit Alleging Violations at all Duke Plants in NC

NC Attorney General Files New Lawsuit Alleging Violations at all Duke Plants in NC

On August 16, the North Carolina Attorney General filed lawsuits against Duke Energy alleging that all of its coal-fired power plants in North Carolina were violating North Carolina law because of illegal discharges (seeps) and our contamination of groundwater. The State stated in its complaint that these violations "constitute a serious danger to the health, safety and welfare of the people of North Carolina and serious harm to the water resources of the State."

NC Attorney General Files New Lawsuit Alleging Violations at all Duke Plants in NC

Marshall Steam Station on Lake Norman

Copies of the complaints and related documents can be found at:


From the Charlotte Observer's Bruce Henderson:

Lawsuits filed Friday by North Carolina’s environment department seek injunctions against 12 Duke Energy coal-fired power plants where ash has polluted water.

The actions mirror earlier state suits against Duke’s Riverbend plant northwest of Charlotte and its Asheville plant. All 14 of Duke’s North Carolina coal plants are now the targets of state litigation.

The two lawsuits filed in Mecklenburg and Wake counties Friday cite groundwater pollution at all 12 of the plants and illegal seepage from ash ponds at most of them. Among them are Allen on Lake Wylie in Gaston County and Marshall on Lake Norman in Catawba County.

Ash contains metals that can be toxic in high doses. The lawsuits cite a number of elements – including arsenic, boron, selenium and thallium – that occur naturally but whose presence at the plants indicate a link to ash.

The suits say ash violations, if not corrected, “pose a serious danger to the health, safety and welfare of the people of the state of North Carolina and serious harm to the water resources of the state.”

Friday’s filings “confirm what we had been saying, that coal ash disposal is being conducted illegally and is polluting North Carolina’s natural resources,” said senior attorney Frank Holleman of the Southern Environmental Law Center, which represents the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation and other environmental groups.

“It would have been appropriate for the department to have conferred with the conservation groups that brought this to their attention.”

Click here to read the rest of the article.

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The program teaches under-privileged and inner-city youth about the natural environment as well as water safety and kayak skills. The kids are then put ON the Catawba River to see and experience everything they learned!
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Tell your Riverkeeper if you see:

  • Sewage Overflows
  • Failure to control sediment from construction sites
  • Illegal clearing of buffer areas
  • Fish kills 
  • Unpermitted discharges
  • Other issues that concern you

Click here to fill out a pollution report or to report water pollution to Catawba Riverkeeper by phone, call 1-888-679-9494 or 704-679-9494.  In addition, to informing your Riverkeeper, you should also report spills or contamination to federal, state and local environmental officials.

To report South Carolina water pollution call 1-888-481-0125.

To report North Carolina spills or fish kills, call your local regional Department of Environment & Natural Resources office during normal business hours (704-663-1699 for most Catawba basin areas or (828) 296-4500 for Burke, Caldwell, McDowell and other mountain counties) or 800-858-0368 after hours.  (For more information on NC spill reporting, click here)


The Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation is a proud member of EarthShare North Carolina, the North Carolina Conservation Network, River Network and the Waterkeeper Alliance.  It also in in an alliance with Clean Air Carolina to address issues, such as sprawl, that cause air and water problems.

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Fish Advisories

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Fish consumption advisories have been issued throughout the Catawba-Wateree River basin.  Many of these advisories are the result of testing initiated by Catawba Riverkeeper and confirmed by state and local officials.  For a chart identifying fish types with the applicable advisories for the Charlotte area, click here.   For more information about the fish advisories, click here.

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