Archives by: Lisa Sorg

Lisa Sorg

About the author

Lisa Sorg, Environmental Reporter, joined N.C. Policy Watch in July 2016. She covers environmental issues, including social justice, pollution, climate change and energy policy. Before joining the project, Lisa was the editor and an investigative reporter for INDY Week, covering the environment, housing and city government. She has been a journalist for 22 years, working at magazines, daily newspapers, digital media outlets and alternative newsweeklies.
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Lisa Sorg's articles and posts

Environment News Top Story

DEQ Secretary Michael Regan is leading contender for top EPA job under Biden administration

Supporters, detractors grade Regan's performance as NC DEQ secretary A few days before state lawmakers confirmed Michael Regan as Secretary of the Environment in 2017, he appeared in Mebane, where he spoke to the West End Revitalization Association and other environmental justice advocates.

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Environment Top Story

Contamination prompts Colonial Pipeline to buy three homes near Huntersville gasoline spill

Company still hasn't revealed total volume of gasoline released in August; DEQ wants answers by Dec. 23. The garage is empty and spotless. A man lugs garbage bags stuffed with soft goods and crams them into his car, filling the back seat and passenger side.

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Environment News Top Story

What happens when there’s no clean water left to drink?

Pittsboro, Fuquay-Varina want to buy drinking water from Sanford. But that town's water is contaminated with PFAS. At least 1 million people living from Pittsboro to Wilmington in the Cape Fear River Basin could be exposed to high levels of toxic perfluorinated compounds.

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Education News Top Story

Locked out: Without internet, tens of thousands of North Carolinians can’t adequately learn, get health care

Nearly a third of all North Carolina households lack high-speed internet, essentially cutting them off from crucial education and health care services, according to a recent report by the Andrea Harris Social, Economic, Environmental, and Health Equity Task Force. Most of these areas are rural and often in communities of color.

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News Top Story

Monday numbers: As Trump expedites U.S. executions, a closer look at federal death row

Outgoing administration proposes to bring back use of electrocution, firing squads People on federal death row could be executed by firing squad or electrocution, if a U.S. Department of Justice rule becomes final. In the waning days of the Trump administration, US DOJ is both expediting the number of federal executions and expanding the methods of how executions can be carried out.

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Environment Top Story

Could defeat in nuisance lawsuits herald a reckoning for the NC hog industry?

In an extraordinary concurring opinion, a Reagan-appointed judge offers searing indictment of industrialized hog farming Shortly after Smithfield Foods lost its third consecutive hog nuisance case in federal court, company CEO Ken Sullivan wrote a letter.

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Environment News Top Story

Smithfield, Dominion propose major swine gas project, but details are secret, troubling residents

Public hearing on Align RNG air permit set for this afternoon

Smithfield Foods and Dominion Energy plan to deploy 30 miles of underground pipeline in Sampson and Duplin counties, part of a controversial project to buy methane from area hog farms, then transport and sell the energy to major utilities.

In and of itself, decreasing methane emissions in the atmosphere isn’t controversial. Such reductions are key to curbing climate change because methane is even more potent in heating the planet than carbon dioxide. And the state’s Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard requires investor-owned utilities to generate or buy a minute amount — just 0.02% — of their power from swine and poultry waste.

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Environment Top Story

Mother Nature chimes in as officials ponder controversial landfill proposal

A day of dangerous flooding underscores concerns of local residents regarding proposed Vance County facility The rain, curtains of it, had fallen in North Carolina all of Thursday. Relentless and unforgiving, floodwaters filled rivers and creeks, which broke their banks. It swept mud from hillsides, buckled roads, swallowed cars. It killed people in several counties.

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Environment Top Story

What the election results mean for environmental protection

Four experts reflect on what's likely to come next in Washington and Raleigh Not since before the Nixon administration, which created the EPA in 1970, have environmental protections been under such a sustained attack — an attack that threatens the planet's very habitability.

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Top Story

Serving as a poll worker filled me with inspiration and hope

A young Black man approached the tabulator and inserted his ballot. He stood back, unsure of what would happen next. The machine inhaled it.  Moments later, a message on the screen signaled that his ballot had been accepted. In the most historic election in modern history, his vote would count. “First time voter!” a poll worker announced. The polling place erupted in applause.

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