February 2, 2015, marked the one-year anniversary of the Dan River coal-ash spill that resulted from the collapse of a stormwater pipe under a coal-ash storage basin at the Duke Energy’s Dan River Station in Eden, North Carolina. The break spilled an estimated 39,000 tons of coal ash from the ash-storage basin into the Dan River.
After the initial emergency phase, the impacts of the spill continued to be closely watched and reported, particularly in Danville, Va., and Greensboro, N.C. A year later, the environmental impacts seemed to have been limited to certain areas, and signs of recovery had been observed by scientists, but longer-term impacts were still possible and continued to be monitored. The spill also had financial, political, legal/regulatory consequences, particularly in North Carolina, and as of February 2015, a grand jury was still investigating possible civil or criminal charges.
A comprehensive account of the incident, its background, and its consequences over the past year is available in The Day the River Turned Gray—The Dan River Coal Ash Disaster, Greensboro News-Record, 2/1/15.
An extensive Water Central News Grouper post on the incident, including a compilation of news articles between February 2014 and February 2015, is available at this link.