New bill would order closure of North Carolina coal ash pits

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A bill backed by key North Carolina lawmakers would require Duke Energy to close all of its coal ash dumps across the state within 15 years, with much of the toxic material going into lined landfills.

A copy of the proposed legislation distributed Sunday to members of the state Senate was obtained by the Associated Press. It orders the nation's largest electricity company to stop pumping its ash into water-filled pits by the end of 2019. Duke's more than 100 million tons of existing ash would either have to be dug up and removed or sealed in place to stop contaminating groundwater.

The legislation comes four months after a massive spill that coated 70 miles of the Dan River in sludge. A committee is set to debate the measure Monday.

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