Duke Energy Considers Non-Mountaintop Removal Options
Monday, June 14th, 2010
Duke Energy has recently made comments hinting that they would like to see an end to mountaintop removal coal mining, but some are skeptical of their commitment.
Duke has asked its suppliers to quote the price for coal not mined with the controversial mountaintop removal technique, a first for the company. Senior vice president Paul Newton also said that the company sees mountaintop removal coal as “a non-sustainable coal.”
Some environmentalists, however, have their doubts.
“I have very strong suspicions that this is not about a sincere effort to protect mountaintops from coal mining,” said Appalachian Voices program director Matt Wasson, citing PR gains from an ostensible concern over mountaintop removal as a potential motive.
Either way, it might not be entirely Duke’s decision. Certain state regulations prohibit energy companies from producing anything other than the cheapest electricity. If non-mountaintop removal coal is significantly more expensive, state regulators could stop Duke even if they wanted to go through with the move.
Stay tuned for more news about Duke Energy’s plans, and visit the Charlotte Observer for more information on the story: