Under the Dome

DENR investigating Chatham coal-ash pit

A company that is readying an open-pit mine in Chatham County to store coal ash may have violated environmental laws, state regulators said Friday.

Recently, Chatham County cited the company, Green Meadow LLC, for violating a local erosion and sedimentation control ordinance when it prepared a railroad bed to transport coal ash from a rail line to the Brickhaven Mine near Moncure. The county said work started on the project without an approved plan.

N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources officials visited the site on Friday and didn’t find any violations of state water quality laws. But the agency is investigating other possible environmental violations, according to a statement DENR released.

A construction stormwater permit and an approved erosion control plan are required when a project disturbs at least one acre. The company did not obtain the permit, DENR says.

The company has applied to excavate millions of tons of coal ash from two of Duke Energy’s four coal-fired plants that the state has ordered removed and taken to storage.

Green Meadow is the landholding firm of Kentucky-based Charah Inc., one of the largest coal ash management companies in the country.

Jarvis: 919-829-4576;

Twitter: @CraigJ_NandO