- Associated Press - Thursday, April 9, 2015

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Duke Energy Corp. says a $25 million fine by North Carolina environmental regulators over coal ash pollution that has been seeping into groundwater for years is excessive and unnecessary.

The country’s largest electric company said Thursday it appealed the penalty announced last month over ongoing contamination at the retired Sutton electric plant outside Wilmington. The site includes a pair of unlined dumps estimated to hold 2.6 million tons of ash.

Duke Energy President for North Carolina Paul Newton says the company operated according to state law and regulations. He says the company closely monitored groundwater and shared the resulting data for decades.

The company’s objections include that regulators fined the company for more than 1,800 days of alleged groundwater violations despite having test samples for only 27 days.

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