Ensuring that Duke Energy responsibly and affordably cleans up its coal ash basins remains a high priority for our state’s electricity customers. I know it’s especially troubling to folks in Iredell County, where the fate and cleanup timetable of 16.8 million tons of coal ash in the basin at Marshall Steam Station is yet undecided. It is understandable that citizens are concerned that the appropriate cleanup method is applied.
For those of us who have been following the issue at coal ash basins across the state, we’re not only concerned about the method by which cleanup is handled, we are also concerned about the means by which cleanup costs are covered. Duke Energy has already received approval to charge its customers $232 million in coal ash cleanup costs, and they’ll be asking for hundreds of millions more. Accountability rests with Duke Energy and its shareholders—not its customers—to foot the bill for cleaning up coal ash.
As state leaders work to determine how Duke Energy will clean up and regulators determine who will pay, citizens of Iredell County are fortunate to have State Senator Vickie Sawyer advocating on their behalf. At the January 17 public meeting in Sherrills Ford, Sen. Sawyer quite literally stood up for her constituents when they called on her for help. As a neighbor of the coal ash basin at Marshall Steam Station, this is the very definition of a problem that hits “close to home” for her.
Thank you, Senator Sawyer, for working towards a solution that helps achieve the right result for Iredell County and the entire state of North Carolina.
Mark Fleming, President & CEO Conservatives for Clean Energy