Climate change is destroying habitats. But relocating species could be tricky.

BY: - May 10, 2023

[This story is Part One of a two-part series first published by Stateline about a federal proposal to relocate endangered species outside their historic ranges. Look for Part Two, which examines how state wildlife officials have widely diverging reactions to the proposal (with special focus on North Carolina) tomorrow.] Nine years ago, a team of […]

In Canton, paper mill’s closure eliminates jobs and leaves 115 years’ of pollution behind

BY: - May 5, 2023

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains about 20 miles west of Asheville, the small town of Canton seems to sprout from the steep hillsides, defying gravity. Its downtown is laid out as a surrender to the topography: a warren of alleys and hidden walkways, coiled roads and railroad spurs. Most important, the town is cleft […]


Environmental groups file civil rights complaint against DEQ over scant poultry farm regulations

BY: - May 3, 2023

Jefferson Currie, the Lumber River Riverkeeper, drove his truck down St. Paul’s Road, a narrow, sandy stretch near the Robeson-Hoke County line and began counting the chicken barns: “Four, eight, twelve … this is a 48-barn operation,” Currie said, “at 35,000 per barn” – doing the math, that’s roughly 1.7 million birds being raised for […]

a customer at a Mobil gas station pump

Here’s where gas prices are headed (for now) and why

BY: - April 27, 2023

Higher temperatures. Higher gas prices.  Drivers across the country have seen that seasonal given play out in recent weeks. The national average for a gallon of regular gas is $3.64 on April 26, up 21 cents over the previous month, according to AAA.  The good news is that gas is 49 cents below where it […]

Construction runoff

NC House environmental bill is likely unconstitutional. A committee passed it anyway.

BY: - April 26, 2023

An environmental bill under consideration at the General Assembly that’s ostensibly about dirt is so freighted with questionable provisions that it could violate the U.S. Constitution, direct environmental permit holders to break federal law, and attract a court challenge. House Bill 579, sponsored by Rep. Mark Brody, a Union County Republican, narrowly passed the House […]

a modular home being elevated

ReBuild NC must increase pace of home completions or risk losing federal disaster funding

BY: - April 25, 2023

ReBuild NC’s homeowner recovery program has finished only 25% of the houses damaged by Hurricane Matthews and Florence, a pace that, if uncorrected, could jeopardize its federal funding. Roughly 4,700 applicants have been approved for new or rehabbed homes, state data show. Of those, just 1,118 are finished. Robeson County’s program accounts for 201 of those […]

hog farm

Hog industry plans major new biogas project in Robeson County, but details are elusive

BY: - April 24, 2023

In any given year, roughly 300,000 hogs are born, weaned, fattened and slaughtered in Robeson County. During their short lifetimes, the animals excrete about 333 million gallons of feces and urine that percolates in open-air lagoons. The rancid cesspools and vast fields where the waste is sprayed are poorly suited for the terrain. Dimpled with […]

a fence guarding an electric substation

After shootings, regulator doesn’t recommend additional substation security standards

BY: - April 21, 2023

The organization in charge of setting and enforcing reliability standards for the U.S. electric grid isn’t recommending new physical security requirements for thousands of electric substations following a rash of shooting attacks that have knocked out power in parts of several states. Jim Robb, CEO of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation, told the Federal […]

This is a photo of a metal sculpture and monument to firefighters. The sculpture is of three firefighters, one helping a colleague who has collapsed. Another has a firehose as if putting out a fire.

NC fire departments stuck with 120,000 gallons of toxic foam; legislation has funds to buy it back

BY: - April 21, 2023

Fire departments across North Carolina have on hand more than 120,000 gallons of firefighting foam that contains toxic PFAS, according to state data, and have used it 51 times to extinguish blazes in eight months. For decades, PFAS-containing foam, known as AFFF, has been used to suppress fires involving petroleum products or other flammable liquids. […]

A map showing that an area in Winston-Salem near US 52 and Waughtown Street has many pollution sources and is 74% non-white and 88% low-income.

House Bill 689 would establish state policy on environmental justice

BY: - April 19, 2023

In just one census block group in south Winston-Salem, there are four hazardous waste sites, three landfills, two contaminated dry cleaners, three tracts that are legally allowed to spread soil contaminated with gasoline or oil, 36 spills from underground petroleum storage tanks and another 18 from those above ground.  Six lots have land use restrictions […]


U.S. House fails to override Biden veto of WOTUS legislation

BY: - April 19, 2023

The U.S. House on Tuesday failed to override a President Joe Biden veto, which means the administration’s regulation stays in place expanding which waters and wetlands can be regulated under the federal Clean Water Act. The House did not clear the two-thirds mark needed to overturn Biden’s veto of a resolution that would have blocked […]

NC State Capitol (Photo: Clayton Henkel)

Weekend reads: NC’s new Teacher of the Year, UNC losing faculty and staff, and one word makes a big difference for NC’s environment

BY: - April 16, 2023

In this issue: 1. One-word change in Farm Act could increase greenhouse gas emissions from hog farms A one-word change in the Farm Act could allow hog farmers to capture methane from their waste lagoons, but choose not to use the gas for energy. Instead, the farmer could merely send the potent greenhouse gas through […]