Duke top executive says she's working to clean up coal ash pits; protesters interrupt meeting

MarketsAssociated Press

Duke Energy's chief executive officer says she's taken steps over the last year to address pollution problems at the company's coal ash pits.

Lynn Good told shareholders Thursday that Duke has learned a lot from last year's coal ash spill that coated 70 miles of a North Carolina river in toxic sludge.

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But the Charlotte-based company's annual shareholders' meeting was contentious. Good fielded questions from people angry about the company's plans to move some coal ash to open clay mines in two rural counties. She also was interrupted by demonstrators who say the $50 billion company is blocking people from putting solar panels on their roofs.

In comments to shareholders, Good didn't mention that Duke is facing criminal charges over years of illegal pollution from ash dumps at five plants.