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DEQ Approves First Of Three New Coal Ash Landfills At Allen Plant

Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation
Duke Energy will dig up coal ash from its current unlined basins at the Allen Steam Station and move it to new lined landfills there. The first landfill has now received a state permit.

State regulators have given Duke Energy the go-ahead to build the first of three new coal ash landfills at Allen Steam Station in Belmont.

Under an agreement last year with North Carolina's Department of Environmental Quality, Duke must dig up the ash from its current unlined ponds and basins and move it to new lined landfills. The deadline to do so is 2038.

The 25-acre lined landfill will be 130 feet tall. It will rise about 50 feet above Southpoint Road. It's designed to hold more than 2 million cubic yards of coal ash that will be excavated from unlined pits on the plant site.

The state DEQ held a virtual public hearing on the plan in May.

For more information about the coal ash closure plan, visit the DEQ website at https://deq.nc.gov/.

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David Boraks is a veteran journalist who covers climate change for WFAE. See more at www.wfae.org/climate-news. He also has covered housing and homelessness, energy and the environment, transportation and business.