Holleman honored

SELC Senior Attorney Frank Holleman doesn’t spend all his time fighting to protect the environment in court. Holleman, middle, frequently accompanies scientists and local advocates on field expeditions to research environmental pollution and contamination. (© Mike Mather/SELC)

Just five years after joining SELC, Senior Attorney Frank Holleman has emerged as the region’s–maybe the nation’s–most effective advocate for cleaning up toxic coal ash pits and lagoons.

He’s gained hard-fought victories in court, through administrative hearings, and through mounting public pressure that has forced utilities in the Carolinas to excavate the polluting ash from riverbanks and move it to safer, modern landfills.

For his efforts, Holleman was recently honored by a leading South Carolina conservation organization, with an accompanying profile in Columbia's The State newspaper.

The Conservation Voters of South Carolina presented Holleman with the “Harriet Keyserling Conservation Advocacy Award” at the organization’s annual Green Awards Luncheon. Nearly 500 people, including South Carolina legislators, attended.

Holleman told The State the work he and his SELC colleagues are doing to force coal ash excavations has benefitted communities and the environment, but has not made him popular with the utilities.

“I think they probably do not like me at all,’’ Holleman said. “We have sued them and forced them to change their behavior in ways they didn’t want to do.’’

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