Dominion is pleased that the court has confirmed there has been no threat to health or the environment resulting from the coal ash stored at its former Chesapeake Energy Center. As we have maintained consistently, the safety of the public, the water and the environment is our top priority. The court noted there has been “no evidence that shows any injury . . . has occurred to health or the environment.”
We also note the court found that removing the ash from the site – as demanded by the Sierra Club – is not a logical action. “The public interest will not be served,” the court found. Removing the ash “will entail years of efforts costing hundreds of millions of dollars, for very little return,” and would result in higher electric rates for customers. Furthermore, the court wrote, “The Sierra Club has not even attempted to itemize the collateral environmental effects of moving this much coal ash.”
And, we are pleased the court cited Dominion as “a good corporate citizen” that has “cooperated with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality every step of the way in operating” the facility.” It noted that we followed all permits. Dominion should not suffer penalties for doing things that it, and the Commonwealth, thought complied with state and federal law,” the court said.
In light of those findings, the court has imposed no civil penalties on Dominion.
While we are still reviewing the order and considering further actions, Dominion remains committed to protecting the people, environment and waterways of the Commonwealth.
Dominion is continuing to evaluate options at Chesapeake Energy Center including removal and beneficial reuse of a portion of the ash. Once a final decision is made we will submit the appropriate applications with the Department of Environmental Quality.
And, we are evaluating the court’s ruling to determine the appropriate next steps.