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Duke Energy to revise coal ash pond closure plans at Gallagher plant

Duke Energy is withdrawing its closure plans for two coal ash ponds at its former R. Gallagher plant near New Albany. The move comes a few months after the Environmental Protection Agency said the ponds weren’t in compliance with the federal coal ash rule.

The Hoosier Environmental Council has also been in a legal battle with Duke over the coal ash ponds. The group said the waste is coming in contact with the groundwater and polluting it — which could also pollute the Ohio River.

READ MORE: EPA clarifies coal ash rule, could lead to safer groundwater in Indiana

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The utility said there are no drinking water wells downstream of the ponds and that water monitors show the ash likely does not impact the river.

In an email statement, Duke Energy said its new plans will include a slurry wall and a synthetic liner cover to reduce the amount of coal ash at Gallagher that mixes with the groundwater.

Contact reporter Rebecca at rthiele@iu.edu or follow her on Twitter at @beckythiele.

Indiana environmental reporting is supported by the Environmental Resilience Institute, an Indiana University Grand Challenge project developing Indiana-specific projections and informed responses to problems of environmental change.

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