The Emerging Leaders in Environmental and Energy Policy Network

ELEEP Virtual Discussion with the NC Sierra Club on Coal Ash

This ELEEP Virtual Discussion took place on July 28, 2016 and dealt with the topic of "Regulating Coal: Lessons from the North Carolina Coal Ash Spill." On February 2, 2014, North Carolina became the site of the second largest coal ash spill in US history when a stormwater pipe under coal ash impoundments at Duke Energy’s retired Dan River plant ruptured. The Dan River was fouled by an estimated 140,000 tons of coal ash and contaminated wastewater, spurring significant public outcry and uncovering questionable practices on the part of the energy utility Duke Energy and the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources. After the spill, the NC General Assembly passed a law to establish a process for cleaning up coal ash throughout NC. However, state and federal enforcement actions dealing with 10 North Carolina sites remain pending. Conservation groups continue to push in court and publicly for cleanup of primitive coal ash storage and pollution at these sites.

Lessons from Denmark and Germany on the European Energy Transition

The first study tour of the 2015-2016 ELEEP Fellowship Class took place from 21 until 25 September 2015. On the study tour 15 ELEEP members visited Denmark and Germany to explore both opportunities and challenges of the European Energy Transition.