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Best Of 2013

Best Worst Neighbor
Duke Energy

Staff Pick

Duke Energy is known for a lot of things around these parts - generating electricity, donating money to the community, etc. - and all are reasons why it calls itself the "good neighbor." But what it may become most notorious for is coal ash waste and being a water hog. Not only does the company use an inordinate amount of fresh water, much of its coal ash waste is stored in unlined, oft high-hazard lagoons that are contaminating groundwater and the surface water that we end up drinking. Instead of cleaning up its mess, the company is spending millions lobbying against coal ash regulations and fighting environmentalists' lawsuits.

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