Following a 2014 coal ash spill in the Dan River, Duke Energy has been involved in a $5.1 billion cleanup project. Meanwhile, coal ash has found use as a cost-reducing, durability-enhancing filler for Portland cement, and demand in the state is far outstripping supply. So the North Carolina Council of State approved a two-year lease of warehouse space at the state port in Morehead City to Spartan Materials, LLC, of Blue Ash, Ohio. Spartan intends to use the space to store 150,000 tons of fly ash imported from India for use in North Carolina concrete plants. Spartan will also be given rights of first refusal for a long-term lease on two acres to store up to 200,000 tons of ash. Environmental standards, meanwhile, are forcing Duke to reduce ash waste, and the ash it will produce will likely be too “clean” for use in concrete. The Commonwealth of Virginia is also in the business of importing ash while requiring extensive cleanup of domestic products. Since 2015, that state has accepted shipments from India, China, and Poland for shipment to Ohio and Wisconsin.