MOUNTAIN TRUE – Action, Issues & Advocacy
The NC Department of Environmental Quality has extended the deadline for public feedback about North Carolina’s coal combustion residuals (CCR) rules from March 22 to April 6. The DEQ has indicated that they plan to enact their own state CCR rules in addition to the federal rules, which are at risk of being weakened by current EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. If the federal rules are weakened, we need to make sure the state CCR rules can step in to help defend our waters and our communities.
Tell the DEQ: Enact strong state CCR rules separate from the federal CCR rules that are under attack by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. Make sure citizens can still challenge polluters through the courts to protect our health and environment from coal ash.
The CCR rules will determine how the state and Duke Energy will deal with coal ash and other coal combustion residuals. Irresponsible coal ash disposal has polluted our groundwater, rivers, lakes and drinking water near coal-burning power plants and coal ash impoundments with toxic chemicals. What’s more, the lack of safety for the dams holding back coal ash risks another catastrophe like the 2014 Dan River spill. If the federal rule is weakened, it would make it very difficult for citizens like you and me to directly enforce the CCR rules by taking polluters like Duke Energy to court.
David Caldwell, Broad Riverkeeper Affiliate
Hartwell Carson, French Broad Riverkeeper
Andy Hill, Watauga Riverkeeper
Gray Jernigan, Green Riverkeeper
OUR MISSION: MountainTrue champions resilient forests, clean waters and healthy communities in Western North Carolina.
OUR VISION: MountainTrue envisions Western North Carolina with thriving communities that are connected to and help sustain a healthy natural environment. To achieve this, MountainTrue will foster and empower advocates throughout the region to be engaged in policy and project advocacy, outreach and education, and on the ground projects. MountainTrue will be known as the region’s best respected and highest impact conservation organization and will be seen as a national model.
We Are MountainTrue
In January 2015, three Western North Carolina environmental and conservation nonprofits joined forces to become MountainTrue. The Environmental and Conservation Organization, based in Henderson County and founded in 1987; Jackson-Macon Conservation Alliance, based in Macon County and founded in 2000; and Western North Carolina Alliance, based in Buncombe County and founded in 1982, merged and adopted three overarching goals:
- to have a stronger influence on policy at all levels of government through increased local presence;
- to build a stronger organization and increase our geographic reach;
- and to strengthen our grassroots engagement and involve a broader spectrum of the population.
To achieve our goals, MountainTrue’s board, volunteers and professional staff focus on a core set of issues across 23 counties of Western North Carolina: sensible land use, restoring public forests, protecting water quality and promoting clean energy – all of which have a high impact on the environmental health and long-term prosperity of our region.
MountainTrue is the home of the French Broad Riverkeeper, the primary protector and defender of the French Broad River watershed, and the Watauga Riverkeeper, the primary watchdog and spokesperson for the Elk and Watauga Rivers. MountainTrue is also the home of the Broad River Alliance, a collection of concerned citizens and organizations advocating for cleaner water, awareness and education, improved access and broadened recreational opportunities within the Broad River Basin. Get involved!