While Charlotte was still reeling from the crash and burn of Patrick Cannon's political career, the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources released approximately 13,000 pages of public records. Among the many pages is this:
Duke Energy worked with North Carolina environmental regulators for years to ensure information about potential fallout from dam breaches - including those at coal ash ponds - would stay exempt from the state's public records law.
Specifically, the department worked to keep secret emergency action plans should the dams breach. They said it was because of terrorism, but environmentalists aren't buying it.
"People need to understand what the plan is if something like Dan River were to happen in, say, Asheville," Sandra Diaz, who requested the information on behalf of an environmental group, told WRAL. "That greater public interest should definitely trump any small chance that a terrorist would look at it like it is a target."