America’s biggest utility company, Duke Energy, is responsible for the spilling of 39,000 tons of coal ash into the Dan River, NC. And it gets worse: the spill was totally preventable, but the state’s environmental watchdog didn’t have the resources to catch the problem.
Why? Because Duke has an ultra-cozy relationship with North Carolina’s governor, Pat McCrory, who has been systematically dismantling the state’s once-formidable environmental watchdog’s powers -- to the benefit of Duke Energy. Pat McCrory worked for Duke Energy for 28 years before being elected Governor -- then suddenly when McCrory became Governor, Duke Energy was allowed to flout federal and state law and increase its bottom line.
Federal investigators have begun to ask questions about Duke’s campaign contributions to Gov. McCrory. Buying off political candidates for corporate gain at the expense of everyday people isn’t right.
Duke: come clean about political contributions that allowed special treatment.
Governor McCrory holds the interests of Duke Energy above the good of North Carolina’s everyday people. If Duke is able to make large campaign contributions to a political candidate and then receive special treatment, it doesn’t just affect North Carolina. It has long-reaching impacts on the environment and the way companies do business in the United States.
Even Duke's own shareholders want to know how Duke is spending their money. The largest proxy advisor -- a firm to help shareholders vote on issues in the company -- demands Duke come clean about its dirty spending on politics and lobbying, and is advising all shareholders to do the same at Duke's upcoming annual shareholders meeting next week.
The federal investigation into Duke’s huge environmental mishap has raised questions about the company’s approach to the land it operates in and the people that live there. Coal ash -- a byproduct of burning coal to power Duke Energy’s electrical generation plant -- should never have been stored in leaky, unlined ponds on the river bank, and almost certainly never would have been if the Governor hadn't dismantled the State's environmental regulatory agency.
By taking action, you’ll be telling Duke that you don’t think it’s right to buy off political candidates for corporate gain at the expense of everyday people.
Tell Duke to disclose its political contributions in North Carolina.
Coal ash spill has wide-ranging impacts in North Carolina, New York Times, 28 Feb 2014