Monday, February 10, 2014

Regulation, American Style

This is in regard to the recent dumping of a massive quantity of coal ash sludge into the Dan river in North Carolina by a power company, Duke energy.  You may have never heard about this environmental disaster, as the press was far more focused on the Olympic ring that didn't light up in Sochi.

"NC regulators shielded Duke's coal ash pollution...RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Over the last year, environmental groups have tried three times to use the federal Clean Water Act to force Duke Energy to clear out leaky coal ash dumps like the one that ruptured last week, spewing enough toxic sludge into a North Carolina river to fill 73 Olympic-sized pools.

Each time, they say, their efforts have been stymied — by the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

The state agency has blocked the citizen lawsuits by intervening at the last minute to assert its own authority under the federal act to take enforcement action. After negotiating with Duke, the state proposed settlements where the nation's largest electricity provider pays modest fines but is under no requirement to actually clean up its coal ash ponds."

North Carolina has become one of the most ideological wingnut States in the country in recent years, and here is the result- a perfect example of what Republicans mean when they talk about "deregulation."  At this point, the coal ash sludge is still leaking into the river, and no one has a clue how much damage is going to be done, or what is going to be required to clean it up.

Oh, and did I mention that the current Republican governor of North Carolina worked for Duke Energy for 28 years?   I'm sure that won't affect the State's response one bit.


Grung_e_Gene said...

Terrorists could only dream of doing the damage BP, Freedom Industries and Duke Energy not only do and get away with but are lauded by Republican quiuslings for..

Green Eagle said...

Right you are. These people are the real threat to the world, not a bunch of pathetic religious fanatics living in caves halfway around the world. Oh sure, they can do some really horrible things- look at the Sudan, or Pakistan. But in terms of mass destruction, they can't even come close to the 400,000 Americans killed by tobacco alone every year, or the destruction of lives that is produced by the energy industry. That's why they spend billions to con us into believing the exact opposite.

Grung_e_Gene said...

It's getting worse Patriot Coal of West Virginia admitted they've got a 100,000+ gallon spill Coal Slurry going on now.