This month, NC DEQ will hold public meetings before determining the fate of coal ash stored on Lake Norman and Lake Wylie.
Following the recent reclassification of the coal ash sites, NC DEQ now has the discretion to require Duke Energy to excavate the material, like at the Mountain Island Lake site, or allow the sites to be simply capped in place.
Both sites are currently in violation of federal coal ash storage rules because waste is stored below the water table. At both plants, Duke has reported groundwater contamination.
This is the last chance for the public to demand this hazardous material be removed from the banks of our drinking water reservoirs. If capped in place, the sites will:
- continue to threaten groundwater;
- require permanent monitoring and maintenance; and
- threaten our surface waters with the risk of breaches.
Instead, the coal ash should be stored in lined landfills that meet federal guidelines or recycled into concrete and other building materials. This is already being done at sites across North and South Carolina.
Duke recently requested and was granted rate hikes totaling $232 million to complete coal ash cleanups. You can give your input on how that money should be spent at the public meetings this month.
More information to come.