NC Department of Transportation

Monday numbers: the environmental impacts of the VinFast electric car factory in Chatham County

BY: - January 2, 2023

With stands of loblolly pine, rivers, creeks and expanses of farm fields, southeastern Chatham County feels like the country. But this neck of the woods is home to many polluting industries: Arauco, a wood products company with a history of air quality violations; the Shearon Harris nuclear plant...

Gov. Cooper’s budget on environmental issues: what it contains and why it matters

BY: - May 12, 2022

Gov. Roy Cooper unveiled his $29.3 billion budget yesterday, 3% of which is devoted to natural and economic resources.  Here are some highlights of the environmental sections and why they’re important: Department of Environmental Quality $2.49 million to address emerging compounds with additional staff and testing Why it matters: Are you tired of PFAS yet? […]

Monday numbers: DOT budget includes $5 million for unmanned aircraft systems

BY: - November 29, 2021

The new state budget, signed into law by Gov. Cooper, the General Assembly included a raft of one-time appropriations of varying sizes that feature extremely vague descriptions and very few details as to the specific purpose for which the funds are to be used. For example, in the Department of Transportation budget, General Assembly allotted a $5 million grant to a Winston-Salem nonprofit known as AeroX for the "development of an urban advanced air mobility system."

Monday numbers: A closer look at the rapid growth in electric and hybrid vehicles in NC

BY: - November 1, 2021

With more than three years to go before its self-imposed deadline, North Carolina has attained 40% of its goal for zero-emissions vehicle registrations.In 2018, Gov. Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 80, which laid out North Carolina's plan to combat climate change and to transition to clean energy.

Dominion backs off plan to build natural gas pipeline along part of American Tobacco Trail

BY: - June 2, 2020

Dominion Energy no longer plans to build a controversial natural gas pipeline along six miles of the American Tobacco Trail, Policy Watch has confirmed. Half the 13-mile underground pipeline would have run in an easement owned by the NC Department of Transportation, and along the ATT from Scott King Road, near Herndon Park in Durham, and […]

NCDOT, Dominion excluded top Durham officials from discussions on proposed pipeline along American Tobacco Trail

BY: - May 22, 2020

The NC Department of Transportation failed to inform top Durham officials of a controversial natural gas pipeline that would parallel part of the American Tobacco Trail, one of the city’s — and the region’s — most popular recreational areas. Emails obtained by Policy Watch under the Public Records Act show that city officials were caught […]

Comments due today on proposed state rule to loosen regulations on digital billboards

BY: - March 5, 2020

North Carolina environmental advocacy groups are calling on concerned groups and individuals to weigh in by today’s deadline in opposition to a proposal from the state Department of Transportation to loosen billboard regulations. The proposal would override local ordinances and allow billboards with a state permit to be converted to digital and raised to 50 […]

Billboard measure up for final Senate vote this morning; digital billboard question remains unsolved

BY: - July 23, 2019

There are about 8,200 billboards in North Carolina that are currently permitted or in the process of being permitted; now imagine if every one of those highway advertisements became a digital beacon of blinking lights all vying for your attention. While it’s extremely unlikely that every billboard would be converted to digital, House Bill 645, would […]

SELC files complaint vs US Fish and Wildlife over 540 toll road threat to endangered mussels

BY: - May 24, 2018

Tiny and unobtrusive, the endangered Dwarf Wedgemussel and the threatened Yellow Lance Mussel are minding their own business in Swift Creek in southern Wake County. They’re doing what freshwater mussels do: The larvae, having hitchhiked a ways on the back of fish like the johnny darter or a mottled sulpin, hatched just last month. Free of […]

Complete 540 gets go-ahead from Fish and Wildlife despite likely death of some threatened mussels

BY: - April 20, 2018

By their nature, mussels are the couch potatoes of bivalve world. Sedentary and sluggish, they muddle through life in silt sand, and are slow to elude danger. Among the predators imperiling the mussels in Swift and Middle creeks are humans. Humans that build houses and pave driveways and drive on new roads, like the 27-mile, […]