News

House bill would expand power of state agencies over water quality, penalties

A clash among business, environmental, and local interests erupted this week over a bill that addresses continued concern over drinking water in the Wilmington area. House Bill 1095, PFAS Pollution and Polluter Liability, seeks limits on the amount of PFAS chemicals allowed in water and levies penalties, even retroactively, on those who violate these limits. 

David Larson
Opinion

Are counties taking the lead in solar plant pushback?

North Carolina’s installed solar power is second only to California’s. Some may cringe at the thought of following California’s energy policy, given the rolling blackouts imposed there. Solar power seemed like an attractive option in 2007, when the Democrat-controlled legislature handed Democratic Gov. Mike Easley a bill that provided sweeping incentives to encourage solar power...

Donald van der Vaart
News

EPA plan addressing chemical pollutants gives few details on dealing with health risks

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released Thursday a long-anticipated federal action plan to address chemical pollutants such as GenX. But critics immediately voiced disappointment the report offers few details about the relief affected communities can expect. The 23-point plan is heavy on describing how to navigate regulations under a variety of federal environmental acts. It...

Dan Way
News

EPA confirms GenX-related compounds used in solar panels

FAYETTEVILLE — Although top national environmental regulators confirmed GenX and related chemical compounds are used to produce solar panel components, they say their research does not prioritize what risks that might pose to the environment and human health. Peter Grevatt, national director of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water in...

Dan Way
Opinion

Lingering lessons from a short but ongoing session 

Environmental concerns are real and warranted, particularly when it comes to public health. The GenX chemical produced by Chemours has been found in water supplies and the impact on human health is still being explored. The company has installed carbon absorption units and promises a $100-million pollution reduction project. In the end, overall fluorochemical pollution...

Becki Gray

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News

Policymakers demand answers about GenX-like compounds in solar panels

As state and federal agencies investigate GenX in groundwater, Carolina Journal has learned GenX and its family of unregulated emerging contaminants are present in some of the solar panels increasingly dotting North Carolina’s landscape. GenX chemicals are classified as perfluorinated alkylated substances, commonly called PFAS. Responding to a CJ query, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency...

Dan Way
News

Lawmakers ask governor to close Chemours plant if changes aren’t made

House and Senate Republicans from southeastern North Carolina want Gov. Roy Cooper to close the Chemours chemical manufacturing plant by June if operators don’t stop polluting public waterways with the GenX chemical compound. That action would be possible under companion bills filed in both chambers Thursday, May 17. GenX pollution has been a political lightning...

Dan Way
News

House passes GenX bill, but Senate willing to wait before acting

House Republicans beat back several attempts Wednesday by Democrats to expand the regulatory scope of a bill dealing with the GenX contaminant dumped into the lower Cape Fear River region, as the measure passed 116-0. But a more formidable challenge to House Bill 189, Short-Term Response to Emerging Contaminants, is in the Senate. And it’s...

Dan Way
News

GenX, judicial redistricting likely targets as lawmakers return to Raleigh

The General Assembly will take up legislation to resolve the GenX water pollution case and judicial redistricting and reform when it returns to special session Wednesday. But what else is on the agenda, or even how often and how long lawmakers will meet, remains a guess. The House Environment Committee meets at 1 p.m. and...

Dan Way
News

Legislative committee sets Wednesday hearing to investigate GenX discharge

Gov. Roy Cooper has given a high political profile to the discharge of the GenX chemical compound into the Cape Fear River. A joint legislative committee will meet Wednesday to begin investigating his administration’s handling of the problem. House Speaker Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, and Senate Leader Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, announced Friday the newly appointed joint...

Dan Way