Project Completed More Than Two Years Ahead of Original Schedule
CAYCE, S.C. (Dec. 19, 2019) - Dominion Energy South Carolina has finished removing more than 3.5 million dry tons of coal ash from a 100-acre wet storage pond at the company's Wateree Station power plan near Eastover.
Coal ash is a byproduct of the coal-fired electric generation process. For decades, it was a common industry practice to deposit coal ash in man-made, wet-storage facilities, often referred to as ash ponds. As part of a commitment to close all its operating ash ponds in South Carolina, Dominion Energy's predecessor, South Carolina Electric & Gas Company, in 2011 reached a voluntary agreement with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control to remove all ash from the Wateree Station facility by Jan. 1, 2022. That commitment was reaffirmed as part of a settlement agreement with the Southern Environmental Law Center and the Catawba Riverkeeper. The agreement also condensed the removal schedule to December 2020.
On Nov. 21, DHEC notified Dominion Energy that its inspectors certified completion of the Wateree Station ash removal project 13 months before the condensed schedule date.
“In 2011, we made a voluntary commitment to complete the ash removal process at Wateree Station,” Dominion Energy South Carolina Vice President of Fossil Hydro Operations Jim Landreth said. “We were able to achieve removal well ahead of schedule, as part of our ongoing efforts to improve operations that are also beneficial to the environment.”
Southern Environmental Law Center senior attorney Frank Holleman said, “With the completion of this project, the Wateree River, Eastover, and the Congaree National Park are safer than they have been in years. At Wateree, Dominion Energy and its predecessor, SCE&G, have set a standard for other utilities to follow.”
The EPA has issued a report endorsing the beneficial use of coal combustion byproducts in the formation of other products, such as cement and wallboard. Roughly 79% of the coal ash produced at Wateree Station is recycled for beneficial use in such products. Material that is not recycled is placed in lined Class-III landfills designed to accommodate coal ash. Material from the Wateree Station ash pond was transferred to such a landfill on site.
About Dominion Energy
Nearly 7.5 million customers in 18 states energize their homes and businesses with electricity or natural gas from Dominion Energy (NYSE: D), headquartered in Richmond, Va. The company is committed to sustainable, reliable, affordable and safe energy and is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy with more than $100 billion of assets providing electric generation, transmission and distribution, as well as natural gas storage, transmission, distribution and import/export services. The company expects to cut generating fleet carbon dioxide emissions 80 percent by 2050 and reduce methane emissions from its gas assets 50 percent by 2030. Please visit www.DominionEnergy.com to learn more.