Reprimand Energy Company for Deliberate Pollution

Target: Lynn J. Good, President & Chief Executive Officer of Duke Energy

Goal: Chastise energy company for illegal and deliberate pollution of an important water supply

North Carolina’s Duke Energy, one of the largest electric power holding companies in the United States, is under fire by environmentalist groups after aerial surveillance photos revealed that the company was illegally and deliberately dumping over 61 million gallons of toxic coal ash waste into the state’s Cape Fear River. The river supplies drinking water to several cities and towns in the state, and the incident marks the eighth time that Duke Energy has violated environmental regulations without reprimand.

Coal plants across the United States generate millions of tons of waste every year—waste that’s contaminated with toxic metals like lead, mercury, arsenic, chromium and selenium, which are said to cause neurological disorders and birth defects. When introduced to waterways, that waste becomes part of our food chain and, in return, can have adverse affects on the livelihoods of wildlife and humans. The energy giant is also responsible for the North Carolina Dan River disaster, which saw 82,000 tons of coal ash released into otherwise pristine waters.

Duke Energy is supposedly permitted to discharge wastewater from ash ponds through a treatment facility into canals and rivers, but only if the company filters out the heavy residue. The photographs, captured by environmentalist group Waterkeeper Alliance, found that Duke Energy bypassed its treatment facility and filtration process and expelled millions of gallons of toxic waste directly into the Cape Fear River. What’s more is that the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), an entity designed to protect the state’s environment and natural resources, has repeatedly ignored the power company’s violations and is responsible for the state’s “climate change denial.” North Carolina has since passed a law making it illegal to use climate-related science to warn coastal counties of future sea level rise.

The carelessness of Duke Energy’s latest environmental violation needs to be reprimanded and the energy giant should face dire consequences for its unthinkable actions. Sign the petition to tell Duke Energy that toxic waste doesn’t belong in waterways.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Lynn J. Good,

It has come to my attention that Duke Energy is responsible for a slue of environmental violations across the state of North Carolina. Responsible for the irreparable Dan River disaster, and now the Cape Fear River disaster, Duke Energy has been involved in not one, not two, but eight environmental violations in the span of one month. This carelessness needs to end now.

Rivers and canals are an important source of drinking water to not only the citizens of your state, but to countless wildlife. Filling those rivers and canals with toxic waste that contains heavy metals and materials like arsenic, chromium, selenium and mercury, which has been linked to birth defects, neurological disorders and even death, is simply not okay. Your actions are cause for concern and it has been too long since Duke Energy was reprimanded for its actions. I urge you to realize the true environmental and health dangers you are causing innocent citizens and wildlife and make an earnest effort to clean up your act.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Malingering via everystockphoto

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