Energy & Environment

News and information about energy, environment or both from Charlotte and the Carolinas. 

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Sheldon Scruggs tends goats on his farm in western Mecklenburg County.
David Boraks / WFAE

Mecklenburg County has more than 230 farms, about half the number of 40 years ago. Residential and commercial development, rising land costs and urbanization are to blame. But renewed interest in local food and the growth of farmers markets offer hope for reversing the trend. Farm advocates say Voluntary Agricultural Districts could protect remaining farms, and maybe encourage more. 

One of four turbines inside the mountain serve two purposes: to generate electricity and to pump water back up into the lake.
David Boraks / WFAE

Duke Energy has begun a $200 million project to add electrical generating capacity at a big hydroelectric dam in South Carolina. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Aug. 6 approved a license amendment that lets Duke install more powerful turbines at the Bad Creek Hydroelectric Station on Lake Jocassee, in northwest South Carolina.

A federal jury decided Friday that the world's largest pork producer should pay $473.5 million to neighbors of three North Carolina industrial-scale hog farms for unreasonable nuisances they suffered from odors, flies and rumbling trucks.

Duke Energy imploded the oldest section of the retired Buck Steam Station coal fired power plant Thursday.
Duke Energy

With a series of explosions Thursday morning, Duke Energy demolished the oldest section of the Buck Steam Station, on the Yadkin River near Salisbury.

In February 2017, workers used a giant crane to lower a containment vessel ring into place at the V.C. Summer nuclear plant in Fairfield County, S.C.
SCANA

Shareholders of SCANA voted Tuesday to sell the South Carolina utility to Virginia-based Dominion Energy, which has agreed to swallow billions of dollars in debt from the company's failed nuclear construction project and other operations.

Duke has offered $62 milllion in rebates over five years to help pay for solar panels on a home, business or nonprofit rooftops.
Duke Energy

Just two weeks after Duke Energy began taking applications for new solar energy rebates, the program has run out of money for homeowners and businesses for this year. 

Atlantic Coast Pipeline

Federal regulators are allowing work on the 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline to expand in North Carolina.

Cube Hydro's Narrows Dam on Badin Lake is among those in the dispute with Duke Energy.
Cube Hydro Partners

State regulators have ruled against the owner of hydroelectric dams on the Yadkin River, in a dispute over how it sells electricity to Duke Energy.

David Boraks / WFAE

Electricity rates will increase slightly for thousands of households in central and western North Carolina even though state regulators rejected Duke Energy's most recent rate hike request, the company said Wednesday.

The Monroe solar farm, on about 400 acres off South Rocky River Road, has about 684,000 solar panels.
David Boraks / WFAE

Duke Energy has put out a call for companies that want to build new large-scale solar farms around the state.  The projects would satisfy a 2017 state law that requires the company to seek competitive bids for new solar projects.

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