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NC Agency Seeks Injunction In Coal Ash Case

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(Photo by Davis Turner/Getty Images)

(Photo by Davis Turner/Getty Images)

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP/CBS Charlotte) — A state environmental agency is seeking a court injunction against Duke Energy over groundwater that may have been contaminated by coal ash from a Charlotte-area power plant.

The N.C. Division of Water Quality took legal action Tuesday against the utility over its handling of coal ash at Mountain Island Lake. This is the first case in North Carolina where the state has filed for an injunction against a utility company, due to the alleged mishandling of coal ash.

The Southern Environmental Law Center praised the state’s action. It says Duke has allowed toxic metals and other harmful substances from coal ash in unlined lagoons to pollute Mountain Island Lake, the Catawba River and other waterways near Duke’s Riverbend facility.

Coal ash is left after coal is burned to generate electricity.

Duke spokeswoman Erin Culbert says the company is reviewing the court filing. But she says the company has complied diligently with the Riverbend water discharge permit.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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