Environment

Coal ash leaks from Rogers plant landfill into nearby creek

The Rogers Energy Complex, formerly known as Cliffside, is in Cleveland and Rutherford counties. (Photo: Duke Energy)

About 1,000 gallons of stormwater leaked from a lined coal ash landfill at Duke Energy’s Rogers plant and reached a nearby creek, the utility announced. The leak, attributed to heavy rains in the area, was discovered during an inspection yesterday morning. However, Duke officials have said neither the creek nor the Broad River sustained significant contamination from the leak.

This is the second reported leak from the Rogers Energy Complex since August. That’s when 15,000 to 50,000 gallons of stormwater spilled into the Broad River, also because of heavy rains. At the time, Duke Energy told WNCN that “steps have been taken to prevent the issue from occurring again.”

There are three coal ash basins — one active and two inactive — at the Rogers plant. (The closure plan is here: CCR CLIFF CLOSE PLN IMP)

In May, the NC Department of Environmental Quality ranked the Rogers active ash basin and one inactive basin as “intermediate risk,” which would require them to be dewatered and excavated. However, Duke has repaired the dam and will provide permanent water supplies to nearby residents. Those actions would then reduce those dam ranking to “low,” and allows Duke to leave the ash in place with a cap and liner and long-term monitoring. A second inactive basin will be excavated.

Environmental advocates have demanded that Duke excavate ash from all of its basins at the 14 coal-fired power plants in North Carolina, and placed in dry, lined storage or recycled for concrete. So far, requirements under the Coal Ash Management Act and litigation filed by the Southern Environmental Law Center have forced Duke to excavate basins at eight of those sites: Riverbend, Asheville, Sutton, Dan River, Cape Fear, Lee, Weatherspoon and Buck. However, the coal ash could be capped in place at six remaining plants: The one basin at Rogers, plus Mayo, Roxboro, Belew’s Creek, Marshall and Allen.

Check Also

Very sneaky, cities — using science to buttress your buffer rules

T he bystanders and lobbyists who this afternoon ...

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

Conference comes a day after new report lauds benefits of same-day registration The new line-up for [...]

North Carolina’s largest public school system may be warning of “enormous disruptions” without speed [...]

Carol Turner hadn’t lived in North Carolina long before last November’s election. A retired nurse, s [...]

Controversy over class-size requirements in early grades has emerged as the biggest issue facing Nor [...]

The post ‘Backroom politics’ brewing appeared first on NC Policy Watch. [...]

The wisdom of the plan by Senate leaders to cut taxes by $839 million was called into question this [...]

Several years of tax cuts have not fixed our economic problems, and more of the same won’t either In [...]

Progress on “second chance” agenda marks a rare positive development in state policy wars There are [...]

Featured | Special Projects

Trump + North Carolina
In dozens of vitally important areas, policy decisions of the Trump administration are dramatically affecting and altering the lives of North Carolinians. This growing collection of stories summarizes and critiques many of the most important decisions and their impacts.
Read more


HB2 - The continuing controversy
Policy Watch’s comprehensive coverage of North Carolina’s sweeping anti-LGBT law.
Read more