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@NCCapitol

Duke Energy wants 'to regain your confidence' after coal ash spill

Posted March 23
Updated March 24

A broken pipe at a Duke Energy power plant in Eden dumped as much as 82,000 tons of coal ash into the Dan River on Feb. 2, 2014. (Photo courtesy of Appalachian Voices)

— Duke Energy took out a full-page advertisement in newspapers Sundays in an effort to "regain" customer confidence following a spill from a coal ash dump last month.

The company's president and chief executive officer, Lynn Good, wrote in the ad, addressed to "the People of North Carolina," that the company is taking action to "ensure the safety of our ash basins and develop a plan for long-term management, including closure."

"Each ash basin site is unique and will require complex measures that will take time," the ad read. "Our work continues with all stakeholders, including our state regulators, to find the right solution that position North Carolina for the future."

Duke has coal ash dumps at 14 power plants in North Carolina, all of which were cited last year for polluting groundwater.

A spill from a coal ash dump in Eden on Feb. 2 coated 70 miles of the Dan River in toxic sludge. Following the Dan River spill, the company has been cited for eight more violations.

The latest came last week when the company was cited for illegal dumping at a retired coal ash site in Chatham County.

Sunday's ad comes days after state regulators asked a judge to withdraw a proposed settlement that would have allowed Duke Energy to resolve environmental violations by paying a $99,000 fine with no requirement that the $50 billion company clean up its pollution.

Regulators said they will now partner with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to pursue joint enforcement actions against Duke for Clean Water Act violations at Dan River and other sites.

Duke Energy officials are expected to be in South Carolina on Monday to discuss coal ash issues with regulators there.

71 Comments

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  • greg69innc Mar 26, 10:05 p.m.

    I'm considering relocating as it gets more and more expensive to live here in NC. Is all of SC controlled by Duke too or just FL and NC

  • rushbot Mar 26, 11:57 a.m.

    if they want to get my confidence back they can do 2 three things...1st, offer solar panel installation at reduced pricing and buy back the excess....2nd, offer wind turbines to rural folks at reduced pricing and buy back the excess...and 3rd, not ask for rate hikes of nc power users in order to pay for their out of state nuke plant repairs or coal plant waste cleanup...

  • Smilester Mar 26, 10:12 a.m.

    And just where do you think the money to do all these things came from??? Our pockets. I hope... View More

    — Posted by buckskin022

    They have a government approved monopoly. Therefore their job is to provide reliable energy to everyone in their area. Keep in mind that Duke Energy is a $50 Billion company. Duke giving $10 million to charity is the equivalent of you leaving a dollar in the offering plate at church on Sunday. They have tried to use their relationship with the NC government, primarily our Governor, to have consumers clean up their mess. If it wasn't for the EPA stepping in they would be raising rates. They should pay whatever it costs to clean up the Dan River & to close every coal ash dump in this state.

  • buckskin022 Mar 26, 9:01 a.m.

    And just where do you think the money to do all these things came from??? Our pockets. I hope to be on solar power within the next couple of years just so I can tell Duke where to put all there fees and rate hikes.

    Duke Energy should and will clean up this spill, but those lousy bums only gave over ten million dollars to charity and education causes last year and provided reliable energy to hospitals and schools. They deserve to be hammered with billions in fines.

  • wasone Mar 25, 1:39 p.m.

    When Duke Energy is the only game in the state and the tell you that the users are going to have to pay for their mistakes( spill) thru higher electrical bills it doesn't say much for wanting to regain my confidence!

  • goldenosprey Mar 25, 12:47 p.m.

    How did you conservatives hornswoggle yourselves into defending Duke? Fun to watch.

  • foolmeonce Mar 25, 8:11 a.m.

    Why don't all of you who hate Duke Energy just buy yourself a windmill, some solar panels and a back-up generator? And you should also attend the Monday marches with the Rev. Barber, and blame all of your problems on McCrory and the republican general assembly. Compared to Bev and Mike, McCrory is doing a decent job trying to get N.C. back on sound fiscal ground. All of you Republican haters should stop trying to over rule the will of the majority of North Carolinians.

  • AuntySocial Mar 24, 5:28 p.m.

    They got caught again, this time dumping their pollution in a tributary of the Cape Fear River. They have no plans to stop or clean up their mess.

  • WralCensorsAreBias Mar 24, 4:41 p.m.

    You want to "regain customer confidence" back? What a joke. The only way that will ever happen is to pay for your own screw ups and cut our bills in half.

    FOR LIFE.

  • mikeyj Mar 24, 4:24 p.m.

    Want my confidence? Don't charge me (a former Progress Energy customer) for a mess that was made... View More

    — Posted by childofNC

    Very good point, in this area we inherited this mess when they gobbled up Progress Energy.

    — Posted by Ijaz Fahted

    Y'all are nailin that right on the head.

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