Thursday, September 20, 2018 News · Press Releases

Statement on the Coal Ash Threat at Grainger Station

by Diane Knich

Coastal Conservation League
Press Statement


Sept. 20, 2018

Media Contacts:

Eddy Moore, Energy and Climate Director — (501) 772-5426 or [email protected]
Erin Pate, North Coast Office Director — (803) 413-5008 or [email protected]
Diane Knich, Communications Associate — (843) 530-0211 or [email protected]

CHARLESTON, S.C. —In 2013, the Coastal Conservation League and our partners, the Southern Environmental Law Center and Waccamaw Riverkeeper, reached an agreement with Santee Cooper to clean up coal ash at the former Grainger Station in Conway.

Santee Cooper has cleaned up most of the coal ash; however, the remaining pollution sits in the path of rising floodwaters from Hurricane Florence. In response to the threat, Laura Cantral, the Conservation League’s Executive Director, issued the following statement:

We remain deeply concerned for the Conway community, as well as our local waterways and wildlife. If the rising Waccamaw River floods the Grainger site, coal ash pollution, with heavy metals like mercury and arsenic, could wash into the river and potentially settle in Winyah Bay, one of the largest estuaries on the East Coast.

The looming disaster underscores why we work to address the remnants of past energy production and move to a more efficient, clean energy system that does not pose these kinds of risks.

It also underscores the importance of planning for a changing climate. We cannot avoid natural disasters, but we can prioritize preparedness and spending to mitigate their devastating impacts. The Conservation League will continue to fight daily to ensure our coastal communities are healthy, strong and able to withstand increasing threats.

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Founded in 1989, the Coastal Conservation League is a nonprofit advocacy organization dedicated to protecting the coastal resources of South Carolina. Our mission is to protect the natural landscapes, abundant wildlife, clean water and traditional communities by working with citizens, local governments and the state legislature.

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