The catastrophic failure of a retaining wall near Knoxville, Tenn., last month has shined a spotlight on the lack of regulation of toxic coal ash from power plants.
Deer hunters take note: The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission will hold a public hearing for comments on proposed changes to a variety of hunting, fishing and trapping regulations at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 14, at Southwestern Community College in Sylva. Some items being considered by the commission: eliminating the daily bag limit for deer; […]
Carole Hartness has a New Year’s resolution that might require a little time—and a lot of help. But the Boy Scouts are ready to pitch in. Woman with a mission: With a lot of help from Cub Scout Troop 602 and Boy Scout Troop 75, Fairview resident Carole Hartness planted the first 59 of the […]
If local soccer coach Randy Bassham has anything to say about it, it just might get easier to find a safe place to play ball, learn trapeze or even race your bike. He’s rallying the masses to help realize his big dream: a multisport complex near Weaverville. Bassham calls it a multipurpose athletic and community […]
A Progress Energy spokesperson reports that the coal-ash storage ponds at its Asheville plant are closely monitored and safe.
Maybe you didn’t feel the earth move recently, but the animals did. On Dec. 18, seismologists recorded at least two small earthquakes in Western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee. Both quakes registered magnitudes less than 3, which means very little serious shakin’ went on (few humans even notice quakes below 2.5). One Xpress forum contributor, […]
At 1 a.m. on Dec. 22, some 500 million gallons of coal sludge flooded 15 homes in a 400-acre area west of Knoxville. Unleashed by a break in a waste-pond retaining wall at the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston coal-fired plant, the wave of mud and coal ash knocked at least one home off its foundation and was as deep as 6 feet as it rushed downstream.
Should warning signs be posted along West Asheville creeks and streams that may be contaminated by tetrachloroethylene, a chemical related to the one found at the CTS site in Skyland? Signs and portents: A West Asheville oil spill resulted in the posting of this sign near the cleanup site earlier this year. Do creeks downstream […]
Carole Hartness has a New Year’s resolution that might take a little time and a lot of help: Over the next 10 years, she intends to plant 1,000 trees.
Print to Web: What local papers say Xpress surveyed Buncombe County newspapers about their online offerings. Some declined to take part or did not respond. The information below was derived from those surveys and other research by Xpress. Our questions were: How much of your print content is available online? Is online content archived? Is […]
Government agencies—not to mention Congress—are great at saying a task will take one month and then having it take six, U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler observed during a Dec. 8. congressional hearing on the former CTS of Asheville site. On hand at the Skyland Fire Department were representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency, the N.C. Division […]
Love is in the water: Oscar the Otter may be in love. The WNC Nature Center critter has “bonded well” with Olive, a female otter in residence. In short, the pair is showing “classic” mating signs, according to the center’s animal curator, Henry Bulluck. Otters will normally mate in late winter or early spring – […]
Plant an apple tree and start a permacultural phenomenon. That’s one way to sum up the mantra of local apple guru Bill Whipple. A 21st-century Johnny Appleseed, he plants trees in public spaces while helping spread the permaculture gospel. By day, the 45-year-old Whipple crafts wood into such whimsical pieces as a curving side table […]
When Charles Dickens published works such as A Christmas Carol and Hard Times in the mid-1800s, coal loomed large among the world’s energy sources. The smokestacks in Dickens’ tales belched black, toxic smoke. That smoke may be gone or at least reduced today, thanks to better filtering and monitoring. But we still rely on coal, […]
Tie your fly and build your rod: Imagine you’re standing in one of Western North Carolina’s trout-filled rivers. Fish dance in the clear waters, you’re casting a Hare’s Ear Nymph you tied, and your rod is a silky smooth graphite number you built. Nope, that’s not like visions of sugarplums dancing in your head. It […]
Shuler called a hearing on groundwater contamination at the CTS site in Asheville, bringing a bit of Washington to town by holding the hearing at the Skyland Fire Department on Monday.
U.S. District Judge Lacy H. Thornburg has ruled that Duke Energy must comply with the Clean Air Act for its new unit at the Cliffside power plant. The Dec. 2 order forces Duke to undergo a stringent process to investigate the plant’s likely pollution levels, as well as the appropriate technology to control toxics released from the new coal boiler that Duke says will replace several smaller older units.
Catch the MPAC buzz: Psst! Rumor has it that a curious coalition of cyclists, aerial artists, rugby players, soccer enthusiasts and the like are working to fund and build a multisport facility in North Asheville. The “Multi Purpose Athletic and Community Complex” is a “nonprofit community effort to bring a state-of-the-art athletic, community, health-and-wellness facility […]
Imagine that you’re on a coffee farm in Nicaragua. After pulping and rinsing the coffee “cherries,” the precious beans are dried, sold and shipped all around the world for roasting and brewing. It’s good, tasty stuff. Coffee from cherries: Your cup of joe begins as a little red “cherry” with two coffee beans hidden inside. […]
Despite vocal opposition from environmental groups, the public and politicians, the Environmental Protection Agency repealed a stream-buffer-zone rule that — since 1983 — had prohibited surface coal-mining activities within 100 feet of flowing streams.
Asheville on Bikes is hosting The Bright Light Biker on Saturday, Dec. 6 — a late-afternoon, early evening bicycle tour aimed at lighting up the town on many levels. Organizers urge participants, “Light up yourself. Light up the family. Light up your bike. And ride your city to show your ‘Bicycle Love.’”