Bay Journal

Whitney Pipkin

Court rules that Dominion’s coal ash polluted Elizabeth River

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A federal judge ruled Thursday that Dominion Virginia Power’s storage of coal ash at a now-closed plant near the Elizabeth River has been illegally polluting groundwater and the river for years. The decision could impact Dominion’s plans to permanently store ash in pits at other plants where coal has historically been burned for power.

U.S. District Judge John Gibney Jr. in...

Virginia governor proposes moratorium on coal ash permits

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe on Wednesday proposed a moratorium until 2018 on any new permits for coal ash disposal until a study is finished of its risks and possible alternatives.

McAuliffe announced that he was proposing amendments to a bill passed by the General Assembly that requires Dominion Virginia Power to study and report on the costs and benefits, risks and...

Experience Alexandria’s maritime past

The developers of a luxurious waterfront hotel in Alexandria, VA, put construction on hold for several months last year after their shovels struck the wooden hull of a ship. The city’s team of archaeologists sprang into action, unearthing part of a 50-foot vessel scuttled into place around 200 years ago that contained a special kind of treasure: a piece of Alexandria’s maritime...

Northern Virginia county wants alternatives to coal ash storage fully considered

Northern Virginia elected officials have called on Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Dominion Virginia Power to stall the utility’s plans to store millions of tons of coal ash by a Potomac River tributary until other options are studied further.

The Prince William County Board of Supervisors voted to seek a delay in Dominion’s controversial plan after a public meeting Tuesday, where it...

Eastern Shore explores fresh approaches for local farming

When we think of agriculture on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, sprawling poultry houses and the grain fields that feed them come to mind. After all, chickens have long outnumbered humans on the Delmarva Peninsula, where their abundance looms large over the health of the Chesapeake Bay.

But Bob Miller is part of a different breed of agriculture that is growing on the Shore, one...

VA lawmakers short of cash, pass ‘building blocks’ for Bay

Despite a steep budget shortfall, Virginia lawmakers managed to pass several pieces of legislation advocates say will benefit the Chesapeake Bay in a session that wrapped up this past weekend.

The General Assembly faced a revenue gap of nearly $800 million over the next two years when it convened early this year, and Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s budget proposal included a fraction of...

Dominion plan to store coal ash at Possum Point questioned

More than 150 people crowded into a high school cafeteria in Virginia’s Prince William County late last week to voice concerns to state regulators about allowing a power plant near the Potomac River to permanently store coal ash in place. Environmental groups and state legislators also have complained the process to close longstanding coal ash impoundments is moving too quickly,...

Some Virginia lawmakers want Alexandria to fix sewage overflows faster

Virginia’s legislators are sounding off this session about how soon the city of Alexandria should have to end frequent overflows from its sewer system into the Potomac River and its tributaries.

The state Senate voted last week to give the city almost eight years to carry out costly upgrades to the system, a change from an original bill that would have required the city to act...

Coal ash storage near the Potomac to be discussed at public meeting

Coal ash storage at one of Dominion Virginia Power’s plants will be the subject of yet another public meeting on the evening of Jan. 26.

Virginia’s Department of Environmental Quality is hosting the meeting at 7 p.m. at Potomac Senior High School in Dumfries to provide information about a proposed permit the company is seeking to permanently store coal ash at its Possum Point...

New plant on James River to require 1st pollution trade of its kind in VA

A $2 billion paper and fertilizer plant under construction near Richmond is more than just the first U.S. venture for a Chinese company that claims to have revolutionized the papermaking process. It’s also the first project to test Virginia’s ability to add new industrial facilities to the Chesapeake Bay watershed while maintaining pollution caps set for the James River more than...

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About Whitney Pipkin

Whitney Pipkin's avatar Whitney Pipkin writes at the intersection of food, agriculture and the environment from her home base in Northern Virginia. Her work for the Bay Journal often focuses on the Potomac and Anacostia rivers, and she is a fellow of the Institute for Journalism & Natural Resources. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Ward Oyster Co.
Ernst Conservation Seeds: Restoring the Native Balance.
A Documentary Inspired by William W. Warner’s 1976 Exploration of Watermen, Crabs and the Chesapeake Bay.

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