What's Happening

Environment

WRAL: EPA won’t further limit air pollution despite coronavirus concerns

By Alanna Joyner / May 4, 2020

On Thursday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it will not enforce regulations that would limit the amount of small particles in our air. This comes after a new study released by Harvard found that people with COVID-19 who live in regions with high levels of air pollution across the country, are more likely…

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Trump’s “open license to pollute” could prove fatal as exposure to air pollution increases risk of death from COVID-19

By Alanna Joyner / April 16, 2020

Last month, Trump’s administration rolled back several environmental laws and fines during the coronavirus pandemic. According to new guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), companies will be exempt from consequences for polluting the air or water during the outbreak. Companies are not expected to adhere to environmental standards or report pollution during this time…

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Duke Energy still seeks rate hikes even as profits are up

By Alanna Joyner / February 18, 2020

Duke Energy turned a profit of $660 million for the last three months of 2019, up 42% from a year ago. This comes after Duke Energy’s proposed rate hike request to raise over $123 MILLION on the backs of rate-payers to pay for their toxic coal ash clean up.  From WFAE: Duke CEO Lynn Good…

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Staggering levels of forever chemicals found in Cape River Basin

By Alanna Joyner / February 6, 2020

A water sample taken from the Sanford sewage treatment plant that discharges into the Deep River, revealed a shocking concentration of forever chemicals.  Documents released from the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality uncovered high levels of potentially carcinogenic chemicals in rivers and streams throughout the Cape Fear River basin in North Carolina — from Reidsville to Wilmington.…

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NC Policy Watch: A federal appeals court judge’s remarkable speech is the latest surprise in NC’s hog nuisance lawsuits

By Alanna Joyner / February 5, 2020

Last Friday, attorneys for a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, the world’s largest pork producer, went before the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and asked three judges to overturn a $3.25 million jury award in a lawsuit filed by neighbors of a large North Carolina hog farm. The attorneys were met with surprise as a…

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Emotions run high at a public hearing over Duke Energy rate hike request

By admin / February 3, 2020

Last Friday marked the first of several public hearings in Alamance County over the potential Duke Energy rate hike request. Numerous residents spoke out against the rate increase — emphasizing the financial hardships that Duke Energy’s rate increase would cause. If the rate hike request is allowed, ratepayers’ bills would go up by 6.8 percent…

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Winston-Salem Journal: Duke Energy is seeking rate hike costing the average residential customer $97 per year. Here’s how you can weigh in

By admin / January 27, 2020

Duke Energy is asking the N.C. Utilities Commission to raise electricity rates on its customers by an average of $8 / month for residents or almost $100 / year to pay for coal ash clean-up. The N.C. The Utilities Commission will hold public hearings in Alamance County on Wednesday and Charlotte on Thursday to take…

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Pressure from citizens in coal ash communities credited for winning cleanup settlement

By admin / January 16, 2020

For years, communities across North Carolina stood up to Duke Energy (as well as the energy giant’s enablers in the McCrory administration and the General Assembly) and fought to get coal ash pollution cleaned up in their neighborhoods. The tenacity of those communities reflects the true spirit of democracy and resilience, now that Duke Energy…

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Settlement forces Duke Energy to clean up coal ash ponds — but who will pay for it?

By admin / January 9, 2020

After years of Duke Energy trying to shirk its responsibility to clean up its coal ash ponds, a new settlement means the energy giant will finally have to clean up these polluted ponds which have leaked countless tons of toxic chemicals into North Carolina waterways. From WRAL: Frank Holleman, senior attorney for the Southern Environmental…

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Duke Energy should pay for cleanup instead of charging ratepayers

By admin / April 30, 2019

A report out today from a coalition of 14 community and environmental justice organizations reveals that Duke Energy skewed its political campaign contributions last year in order to gain support for a highly controversial bill that would make it easier to pass cleanup costs on to customers. Last year, the North Carolina Utilities Commission authorized the giant Charlotte-based utility to charge…

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