Coal Ash Wednesday: Chatham County ash pit leaking dangerous toxins

coalashslurry.jpg

Charah needs to answer some questions like yesterday:

State regulators have asked the operator of a Chatham County landfill where coal ash is being stored to come up with a plan to address high levels of toxic elements found in nearby water. The Brickhaven site near Moncure is a former clay mine that the state Department of Environmental Quality approved four years ago to be used as a lined landfill for coal ash being moved from unlined pits at Duke Energy power plants.

DEQ's Division of Waste Management sent a letter to Brickhaven operator Charah Inc. on Friday, noting that levels of barium, chloride, chromium, cobalt and vanadium were found at levels higher than state standards in various groundwater monitoring wells over time. In addition, high levels of arsenic, cobalt, copper, lead and zinc were found in nearby surface water.

In theory, the clay located at this particular site should have provided a good impermeable layer to block seepage. But generally speaking, when a mine is "played out," there's not enough (of whatever it is) left over to continue operating. Whatever the case, this just drives home the message that bottom liners are the only way to ensure leachate doesn't get into the groundwater. But thanks to decades of criminal negligence by coal plant operators, only 5% of the nation's ash pits have those liners:

Wednesday News: Common sense prevails

bluenccup-1[1]_0.jpg

CONTROVERSIAL WIND ENERGY BAN REMOVED FROM LEGISLATION: A freeze on new wind turbines the Senate approved for wide swaths of the state is gone from a new proposal on regulating wind turbines. House and Senate negotiators removed the moratorium the Senate approved in Senate bill 377 and added an addition to the state permitting process by requiring the state to ask for more information from military commanders. Companies that want to erect wind turbines must already seek local, state and federal approval. The bill approved by a House committee Tuesday was described as a compromise between the House and Senate. It is a drastic change from the ban on wind turbines Sen. Harry Brown, a Jacksonville Republican, first proposed.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article231930593.html

Tuesday News: White Supremacist playbook

NC SENATE PASSES ICE BILL THAT COULD REMOVE BLACK SHERIFFS: HB370 has a provision for the removal from office of sheriffs who do not cooperate with the ICE on the detainers. Cooper, in a statement released from his office mid-afternoon, said dangerous criminals can already be locked up and prosecuted, but that the bill was “about scoring political points and using fear to divide us.” The Rev. Anthony Spearman, the president of the state NAACP, said during the morning press conference that the legislation was meant to target the black sheriffs. He called it “a tactic straight off the pages of the white supremacist playbook.” He said voters in the counties that elected the sheriffs “have all said that we want sheriffs who will not be slaves to the immigration and enforcement authorities that tear this nation apart.”
https://www.journalnow.com/news/local/n-c-senate-approves-ice-cooperation-bill-paul-lowe-a/article_1...

Tuesday Twitter roundup

Crank it up so those in the back can hear:

I agree too. NC Republicans punished tens of thousands on North Carolinians in an effort to kill the Affordable Care Act, and it didn't work. It's long past time to stop that punishment.

Monday News: Of the people...

bluenccup-1[1]_0.jpg

DURHAM'S PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING INCLUDES LGBTQ YOUTH CENTER: Durham’s first foray into letting residents decide how their tax dollars are spent will help fund four new city-wide projects, including an LGBTQ Youth Center. For Asher Skeen, a 20-year-old transgender man, having a center could mean everything to local LGBTQ youth, if it’s done right. “I think the biggest thing that the city of Durham should do is to listen to the voices of queer youth and people in the community and ask them what they need,” Skeen said. “What [do] they need out of the space? What would make it helpful and a good place to go?” Durham is the second city in the state behind Greensboro to offer participatory budgeting. Greensboro started its program in 2014 and divvies up $500,000 among its five city council districts.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article231762338.html

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

editorialprinting.jpg

MOORE & BERGER ARE FLAT-OUT WRONG. COMPROMISE, EXPAND MEDICAID NOW: It is cruel and thoughtless to deny health care to North Carolina citizens most in need but least able to get it. North Carolina legislative leaders continue to parrot canned talking points from hyper-partisan organizations to justify their opposition to expanding Medicaid. They did it again this week in a letter to Gov. Roy Cooper. These groups, like the legislative leadership, reflexively despise anything initiated by former President Barack Obama – no matter the benefits that might be gained or the hardship their bias inflicts. A large majority of North Carolina voters support expanding Medicaid. Remember, Medicaid expansion comes at relatively little cost to the state. Thirty-seven states have done it. Federal taxes collected here are paying for expansion in those states.
https://www.wral.com/editorial-moore-berger-flat-out-wrong-compromise-expand-medicaid-now/18464552/

Pages

Subscribe to Front page feed