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Coalition of environmental groups appeal to lawmakers to change parts of coal ash legislation

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RALEIGH, North Carolina — Environmental groups are asking two key North Carolina lawmakers to change legislation they say weakens the state's protections against coal ash pollution.

The Southern Environmental Law Center and other groups sent a letter Friday to Senate Leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Thom Tillis outlining serious concerns with coal ash legislation in a conference committee.

They say Duke Energy would continue to contaminate public water by leaving coal ash in unlined pits.

The groups say the legislation runs counter to the promise lawmakers made to protect the environment after a Feb. 2 massive coal ash spill at a Duke plant coated more than 70 miles of the Dan River in toxic waste.

The conference committee is trying to work out a compromise between House and Senate versions of the bill.

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