The Issues Facing Hampton Roads

Commercial menhaden harvesting. Photo by John Surrick/CBF StaffCommercial menhaden harvesting. Photo by John Surrick/CBF Staff

Map showing location of proposed ODEC power plant. Lucidity Information DesignMap showing location of proposed ODEC power plant. Lucidity Information Design

Plans for ODEC's Proposed Cypress Creek Coal Plant Suspended

On August 8, 2012 it was announced that plans to build a coal-fired power plant in Surry County had been suspended. According to statements, Old Dominion Electric Cooperative (ODEC) asked the Army Corps of Engineers to cease the permitting process needed for the plant to proceed. CBF hopes ODEC officials stand true to these statements. If they do, it will be a great win for the Chesapeake Bay, its rivers and streams and the citizens of Hampton Roads who have so vigorously opposed the facility.

As proposed, the plant would have been the largest coal-fired power plant in Virginia and, by ODEC's own accounts, emit millions of pounds of nitrogen oxides (smog-causing chemicals) and carbon dioxide (a major greenhouse gas), as well as soot, mercury, lead, benzene, and other toxic air pollutants.

Read the CBF report, "A Coal Plant's Drain on Health and Wealth," which explains the impact ODEC's plant would have had if the plant had been built.

Numerous human health organizations, environmental groups, nearby localities, and hundreds of local citizens have publicly opposed the plant due to its likely harmful environmental, economic, and human health impacts on the Hampton Roads region. CBF broadly applauds their unyielding opposition.

ODEC's continued ownership of the property where the plant was proposed and changes in local zoning authority from Sussex County, Surry County, and the Town of Dendron, leave unresolved questions about what will happen next. CBF hopes that a usage of the property can be found that can benefit both the economy and environment of the region. 

For now, we are grateful for this apparent victory! CBF will continue to closely monitor any future permitting actions associated with the property.

See the sidebar for more information and read our report, "A Coal Plant's Drain on Health and Wealth."


Farm fields. Photo courtesy NRCS MarylandWhat role do farms and agricultural production play in the health of our waters? Learn more

Chemical Contamination

An osprey in its nest in the James River right next to a chemical plant. Photo © Krista Schlyer/iLCP.Toxic chemicals are entering our waters every day. What can we do about them? Learn more

Land Use

Sprawl development. Photo copyright Nikki DavisWhen the watershed's land suffers from pollution and poor management so, too, does the water. Learn how

Sewage & Septic Systems

Easton Utilities sewage treatment plant. Photo courtesy City of EastonUpgrading wastewater treatment is key to cleaning up the Bay. Learn more

Stormwater Runoff

Residential stormwater runoff. Photo copyright 2010 Krista Schlyer/iLCPDid you know that stormwater runoff is the fastest growing source of Bay pollution? Learn more

Find out what other issues are affecting the health of the Bay. >>

In the News

04.21.17 - McAuliffe signs bill forcing faster replacement of Alexandria sewers

04.20.17 - Video DNR: Survey shows highest number of female spawning-age crabs in reported history

04.20.17 - Video Survey finds increase in adult female blue crabs in Chesapeake Bay

04.20.17 - Females up, males down in blue crab dredge survey

04.19.17 - AIA selects top 10 most sustainable projects of 2017

04.19.17 - Survey: Chesapeake Bay blue crab numbers down

04.19.17 - The Bay has a lot more female blue crabs this year, and they're ready to spawn

04.19.17 - DNR survey shows dip in blue crab population

04.19.17 - Chesapeake Bay blue crab population remains 'steady,' spawning-age female numbers surge 

04.19.17 - Chesapeake Bay female crabs at their most plentiful since at least 1990

04.14.17 - Integrating stormwater management with natural beauty along the James

04.13.17 - Alexandria CSO deadline unresolved

04.13.17 - Lee Earth Day event to be replaced by local festival

04.10.17 - Volunteers needed for 29th Annual Clean the Bay Day

04.07.17 - Video Community tours new wetland project in Waynesboro

04.07.17 - Environmentalists alarmed over Trump's plan to cancel Chesapeake Bay Program

04.05.17 - Experts to discuss climate change's impact on Bay region

04.04.17 - Oyster gardening seminars available to help waterfront homeowners with restoration

04.03.17 - Environmentalists say budget hurts efforts to protect Chesapeake Bay

04.03.17 - In Virginia, the Trump effect on environment is beginning to come into focus

03.29.17 - CBF Press Statement CBF Statement on Rep. Scott Taylor Letter Supporting Bay Program Funding

03.28.17 - CBF Press Statement CBF Statement on Proposals for Addressing Alexandria's Combined Sewer System

03.27.17 - Friends of the Rappahannock programs could be in jeopardy if EPA cuts pass

03.26.17 - Chesapeake Bay funding, on Trump's chopping block, pays for projects large and small

03.22.17 - Beach restoration project offers authentic outcomes

03.21.17 - The history of oystering in Hampton Roads

03.20.17 - Video Virginia Senators calling for rejection of Chesapeake Bay budget cuts

03.19.17 - Chesapeake Bay's future imperiled

03.19.17 - Chesapeake Bay's booming oysters industry is alarmed by Trump's EPA budget cuts

03.16.17 - Chance to see Mill on the fly April 1

03.16.17 - Trump puts his mark on budget

03.16.17 - Trump budget cuts all federal funding for Chesapeake Bay

03.16.17 - Video Trump administration proposes eliminating funding for EPA's Chesapeake Bay Program

03.16.17 - Trump budget axes funding for Chesapeake Bay cleanup

03.16.17 - Trump budget calls for cutting Chesapeake Bay cleanup funds to zero

03.16.17 - Trump budget would cut all federal cleanup funds for Chesapeake Bay

03.11.17 - 90-year-old volunteers to save the Bay

03.10.17 - EPA cuts could take toll on Valley waterways

03.10.17 - EPA cuts promise harm for Hampton Roads

03.09.17 - Bay is in danger

03.03.17 - Chesapeake Bay cleanup budget would be slashed from $73M to $5M under new White House proposal

03.02.17 - Trump would cut Chesapeake Bay cleanup from $73M a year to $5M

03.02.17 - State budget reduces funding for agricultural cost-share program

03.01.17 - VA lawmakers short of cash, pass 'building blocks' for Bay

02.27.17 - Hampton Roads congressmen seek $73 million for Chesapeake Bay cleanup

02.27.17 - CBF Press Statement Virginia Budget Supports Farm Conservation Practices

02.23.17 - Seeds planted for Chesapeake Bay

02.17.17 - Clear waters mission

02.15.17 - Students address ways to solve Tangier's 'crisis'

02.12.17 - Conservation efforts support healthier farms, cleaner water

02.12.17 - Video Stormwater banks pitched to address pollution, flooding, and development on Middle Peninsula

02.11.17 - Annual 'Water Day' has steady flow of ideas

02.08.17 - The Chesapeake begins to come back

02.08.17 - Farm Bureau, Chesapeake Bay Foundation both backing cost share program

02.07.17 - CBF Press Statement CBF Statement on Virginia House and Senate Budgets

02.05.17 - Clean water remains a priority

02.05.17 - 'Bay Barometer': Va. on track to meet 2017 bay cleanup goals

02.01.17 - Bay 'Barometer' shows restoration progress, but forest buffers, wetlands lag

02.01.17 - Audio available Spotting Eagles: Counting Along the Rappahannock

02.01.17 - Programs preserve Chesapeake Bay

02.01.17 - Chesapeake Bay watershed health improving

02.01.17 - 'Bay Barometer' shows Virginia on track to meet 2017 bay cleanup goals, but more work ahead

02.01.17 - Bay grass update #1: seeds and stems

01.31.17 - CBF Press Statement Statement on Virginia General Assembly Resolution Commending CBF on Its 50th Anniversary

01.28.17 - Macon Brock's influence spreads across Virginia

01.28.17 - Tri-Cities have benefited from EPA funds that could be at risk

01.24.17 - Rappahannock eagle count sums up success of preservation effort

01.23.17 - Brock Environmental Center Wins SBIC Top Honors

01.22.17 - Virginia scores daily double in gourmet sweepstakes

01.22.17 - New plant on James River to requires 1st pollution trade of its kind in VA

01.22.17 - Eagle Scout builds outdoor library next to Brock Environmental Center in Virginia Beach

01.21.17 - Senate panel rejects plastic bag tax

01.18.17 - Creating a "Poster Building" for Leading-Edge Sustainability

01.17.17 - 'Grasses for the Masses' lets anyone with a socket and some spare time contribute to the health of the James River and the Chesapeake Bay

01.14.17 - Could treated sewage be a tool against sea-level rise?

01.13.17 - It's no accident that Bay is improving

01.12.17 - 'Grasses for the Masses' environmental initiative returns

01.11.17 - Caroline County's Bill Portlock the perfect choice for state group's top conservation award

01.10.17 - Funding common theme as Bay states confront 2017 environmental issues

01.09.17 - The Bay is getting healthier, says Chesapeake Bay Foundation report

01.08.17 - Foundation leads effort to seed oysters in Hampton River

01.06.17 - Audio available Hampton River is full of oysters, just don't eat them

01.05.17 - Chesapeake Bay's health is improving, but work remains

01.05.17 - Chesapeake Bay improving, but lots of cleanup still needed

01.05.17 - Delegate moves to roll back penalties for commercial fishing violations

01.05.17 - Chesapeake Bay health scores C- in new report

01.05.17 - Chesapeake Bay health score, fishery populations see an increase in 2016 report

01.01.17 - What you can do about flooding

12.30.16 - Building on consensus

12.26.16 - Over 200 Toano MS students explore Chickahominy River

12.24.16 - CBF seeks volunteers to grow underwater grasses to help restore the Bay

12.24.16 - Bay foundation reports more grasses, crabs, and oysters

12.19.16 - Cleanups bag 10,000 pounds of trash along Appomattox River

12.19.16 - Volunteers needed to grow and restore Bay grasses

12.16.16 - CBF Press Statement CBF Statement on Virginia Governor's Budget Proposal

12.15.16 - Volunteers needed to grow and restore Bay grasses

12.14.16 - Eden sprouts from VA church's gardens

12.08.16 - Audio available 2017 deadline approaching for Chesapeake Bay pollution reduction goals

12.06.16 - Spotsylvania County Public Schools receives science education grant

12.03.16 - A flood of data on tide cycles in Hampton Roads worries meterologists

12.03.16 - Good neighbors plant trees to help Virginia's ecosystem

11.29.16 - Two meetings on menhaden will put a big spotlight on a little fish

11.26.16 - Spratley students help Chesapeake Bay Foundation plant rain garden

11.25.16 - Virginia Beach students fight against the tide in nature lesson

11.21.16 - New VA plant promises cleaner way to make paper

11.19.16 - Foundation leads effort to seed oysters in Hampton River

11.13.16 - Video Chespeake Bay Foundation leads effort to seed oysters in Hampton River

11.12.16 - Portlock receives conservation award

10.31.16 - On the James, environmental advocacy targets Hispanic population

10.28.16 - Fisheries Commission raises menhaden catch limits

10.28.16 - School on water

10.27.16 - Fisheries panel, after failed last try, agrees on increase in menhaden harvest

10.23.16 - CBF building exhibits a resilient future

10.17.16 - Slowing the flow: Fixing flooding with gardens and wetlands

10.13.16 - Students take educational cruise to Port Isobel West

10.10.16 - Bay Foundation program lets participants help restore grass beds with home kits

10.09.16 - Brendan Leary awarded Eagle Scout after leading Chesapeake Bay oyster recovery project

09.29.16 - Can eating oysters save the Chesapeake Bay?

09.26.16 - Borrow a nature book from the new Free Lending Library at Pleasure House Point

09.24.16 - Kingsmill restaurant joins effort to recycle oyster shells

09.21.16 - Chesapeake Bay: Barometer of the Environment

09.21.16 - Researchers: Strong, positive trends for Chesapeake Bay cleanup

09.16.16 - Chesapeake Girl Scout recycles oyster shells in effort to help local waterways

09.15.16 - Video Shark spotted in the Chesapeake Bay

09.15.16 - Shark sightings in the Chesapeake Bay

09.14.16 - Video Shark sighting in Chesapeake Bay

09.14.16 - $11.5M in federal grants aimed at cleaner Chesapeake Bay

09.13.16 - Audio available Hopewell on trak to clean up the James

09.09.16 - Natural gas-fueled plant: Good or bad? In Chesapeake, it all depends

09.09.16 - Audio available Climate change threatens wildlife, people of Chesapeake

09.08.16 - Farmers take boating trip along Chesapeake Bay

09.06.16 - VA middle schools embrace agriscience education, FFA

09.01.16 - City nets $315K in river restoration grant

08.31.16 - We should ramp up Bay restoration, not roll back protections

08.30.16 - Audio available Chesapeake Bay Foundation finds E. Coli pollution up to 100 times state standards at Richmond area recreation spots

08.25.16 - River Stone joins S.O.S.

08.19.16 - Video Recycled oysters improve water quality in Norfolk's Lafayette River

08.18.16 - Plenty to do and see outdoors as August winds down

08.16.16 - Millions of oysters going into Lafayette River

08.10.16 - A great program for the Bay

08.09.16 - Afloat with CBF

08.05.16 - Oyster trail leads to the Bay's beds and to fine restaurants everywhere

08.03.16 - Sustainability leaders turn to wellness and technology to get an edge

08.03.16 - CBF Press Statement CBF Statement on Menhaden Harvest Decision Delay

07.30.16 - Paddleboarders, canoers, kayakers turn out for 19th annual race on Chesapeake Bay

07.24.16 - NOAA deploys another smart buoy in the Bay

07.21.16 - Lake pays for the price of runoff

07.20.16 - Chesapeake Bay grasses on the rebound

07.18.16 - Dolphins more common in Potomac than previously thought

07.18.16 - 19th annual Paddle for the Bay event set for July 30

07.17.16 - LTE: Protecting the Bay

07.14.16 - Tidewater Oyster Gardeners Association demonstrate educational reef at Camp Kekoka

07.14.16 - Environmental education center in Virginia Beach recognized with major sustainability award

07.14.16 - Incredible net-zero energy Brock Envrionmental Center turns rainwater into drinking water

07.14.16 - Lafayette progress shows hard work's payoff

07.13.16 - Environmental group for moms tackles childhood hunger in Virginia Beach, nationwide

07.12.16 - Don't waste energy pursuing offshore wind power

07.08.16 - After years of work, the Lafayette River in Norfolk finally is looking healthier

06.29.16 - Area governor's school students learn by seeing and doing on annual summer trip

06.28.16 - Audio available Loopers: Traversing the 'Appalachian Trail on Water'

06.28.16 - Sustainable Buildings Award 2016 final shortlist announced

06.26.16 - John Smith Chesapeake Trail celebrates 10 years

06.20.16 - Audio available In Norfolk, climate change means dealing with rising water. The Dutch are there to help.

06.20.16 - Liquid Asset

06.16.16 - Video Hampton students spend year growing oysters for Elizabeth Lake reef

06.14.16 - Seminars help homeowners learn to raise oysters

06.13.16 - Naval Station Norfolk Sailors participate in Clean the Bay Day

06.12.16 - Conservationist gives tour of his river work

06.12.16 - Clean the Bay Day volunteers tackle Suffolk's waterways

06.09.16 - SmithGroupJJR's Brock Environmental Center converts rain into drinkable water

06.08.16 - Local farmers help save the Bay

06.08.16 - Video Virginia farmers pitching in to purify waterways

06.07.16 - Chesapeake Bay awareness at the forefront this week 

06.06.16 - Hopewell volunteers among thousands at 'Clean the Bay Day'

06.06.16 - 2,290 pounds of litter collected on Bay Day

06.06.16 - Tabb woman champions Chesapeake Bay in charity competition

06.04.16 - CBF Press Release Clean the Bay Day Draws Thousands of Volunteers to Pick up Shoreline Litter and Debris

06.01.16 - Chesapeake Bay Foundation to Teach Seminars on Oyster Gardening

05.31.16 - Participate in the 28th Annual Clean the Bay Day in Hampton Roads

05.31.16 - Video Foundation, volunteers set to tackle VA's waters for 'Clean the Bay Day'

05.31.16 - 8 things to do in the D.C. area the week of May 31-June 5

05.31.16 - The Case of the Missing Energy Model

05.25.16 - Ultra-Green Brock Center Certified as a 'Living Building'

05.24.16 - Virginia State Parks to celebrate National Trails Day

05.23.16 - Williamsburg seeking volunteers for 'Clean the Bay Day'

05.17.16 - New Smith Trail guide helps boaters, like Looping couple, plan trips on Rappahannock River

05.16.16 - Officials vow VA will protect watershed if pipeline goes ahead

05.12.16 - CBF's Brock Center declared a 'living building'

05.12.16 - Virginia Beach's Brock Center one of the first buldings in the world to earn elite green honor

05.12.16 - Audio available Moving the Classroom Outdoors

05.12.16 - CBF Press Release Brock Center Meets Living Building Challenge

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