North Carolina filed this nuisance lawsuit in 2006 in a bid to force the utility to reduce the air pollution produced by TVA’s 11 coal-burning power plants in Alabama, Kentucky and Tennessee. State Attorney General Roy Cooper argued that thousands of N.C. residents suffer adverse health affects, such as asthma, because of pollution blowing over the mountain’s from TVA’s plants. The lawsuit contends that the pollution is a nuisance, and it aims to force the TVA to clean it up.
The TVA disputes those claims, arguing that it has spent billions of dollars to reduce emissions and that pollution produced by North Carolina’s in-state coal-burning power plants poses a more significant threat.
In 2008, the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals turned down TVA’s motion to dismiss the suit, sending it back to North Carolina’s Western District Court and Judge Lacy Thornburg in Asheville. The trial is scheduled to begin July 14, 2008.
Click here to download a PDF of the lawsuit.
In an order signed Jan. 13, 2009, Judge Thornburg ruled that the TVA must install pollution controls at four of its coal-fired power plants closest to North Carolina, but denied Cooper’s request to add the controls at seven other plants.