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Local Government
TVA Settlement Funds To Be Used For Western N.C. Bioenergy Research Grants PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Friday, 05 September 2014 14:17

RALEIGH, (SGRToday.com) - Nearly half a million dollars in TVA Settlement funds will help western North Carolina counties develop bioenergy projects, according to state Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler.

The competitive grant program is part of the N.C. Bioenergy Research Initiative. 
A total of $438,583 from the TVA Settlement Fund would support projects in Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Swain, Transylvania, Watauga and Yancey counties. The remaining $561,417 of the nearly $1 million total in funding would support projects from other counties. 
The deadline to submit proposals geared toward boosting energy production from state agricultural and forestry products is Sept. 26.
The goal is to offer new opportunities for agribusiness development and supporting cooperative research for biofuels production.
According to Commissioner Troxler's news release, projects can focus on production and harvesting methods and plant variety work,  including genetic improvement and selection; establishment methods; weed management; nutrient uptake, usage and removal; harvest management such as methods, timing, transporting and storage; stand management such as renovation for productivity, planting dates, crop management and eradication when necessary; physiology, growth and development of biomass energy crops; new species with bioenergy potential; multiple crop production practices such as crop rotation and intercropping; and education and demonstration.
Individual applications should not exceed $100,000 in direct funding from the grant program. However, special consideration may be given to multi-year projects that warrant funding in excess of $100,000. 
Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 14:18
State Raises Hazard Classification At Coal Ash Dams In Lumberton PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 03 September 2014 14:47

RALEIGH, (SGRToday.com) - Based on new information from Duke Energy, state regulators have moved to ensure to safeguard Lumberton area residents from a potential failure of two coal ash pond dams.

To that end, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources has raised the hazard classification for the dams at the Weatherspoon Steam Station to “high hazard,” the most serious of the three classifications. The classifications are used to measure the downstream damage potential if a dam breaches, but the classifications do not relate to the condition of a dam. 
According to a news release from regulators, the classifications were changed by state Dam Safety officials after Duke Energy provided the state with emergency action plans that show that a failure of either dam could severely damage downstream property or endanger residents living in four homes near the Weatherspoon coal ash impoundments. 
Because of the status change, the dams will be inspected once a year. Duke is required to handle periodic checks.
Dams are classified as “high hazard” if a failure would likely cause loss of life or serious damage to property or roads. Before the dams were reclassified, one of the dams at Weatherspoon was classified as “exempt” while the other was classified as an “intermediate” hazard, the agency said.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 14:48
Triangle Transit To Discuss Durham/Orange Light Rail Project At Public Workshops PDF Print E-mail
Local Government
By Administrator   
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 14:23

RALEIGH, (SGRToday.com) - Earlier this year, the federal government gave a green light to the development phase of a Triangle-based light rail system and now local transit officials are hosting workshops about the $1.3 billion Durham-Orange line. 

Voters in Durham and Orange counties approved a one-half cent sales tax to fund the local share of the project. Wake residents have not voted on the issue. 
Triangle Transit will host the meetings to discuss information about the 17-mile project. Allowing the public to share concerns will assist officials in preparing a draft Environmental Impact Statement that will be published and available for public comment next spring.  
According to an Orange County news release, the proposed light rail line will run from Chapel Hill to East Durham, serving UNC Hospitals and UNC, Mason Farm Road, Friday Center, Leigh Village, Patterson Place, South Square, Duke University, Duke University Medical Center, the VA Medical Center, downtown Durham, and Alston Avenue/NC Central University. 
Workshop Schedule:  
--Tuesday, November 18, from 11:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Durham Station Transportation Center,    517 W. Pettigrew Street in Durham
--Tuesday, November 18, from 4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
UNC Friday Center in Chapel Hill
-- Wednesday, November 19, from 4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Marriott/Spring Hill Suites, 5301 McFarland Road at Patterson Place in Durham 
-- Thursday, November 20, from 4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Old Fayetteville Street in Durham 
Last Updated on Tuesday, 02 September 2014 14:23

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