If those who promote taking over Alcoa’s Yadkin project have legitimate issues, why do they rely on fallacies and fiction? Just “declaring” something to be “true” or “factual” doesn’t make it so. Truth and factuality can be substantiated, verified, proven - without disregarding vital evidence. Let’s look at part of the litany (there‘s so much!).
Alcoa is a multi-national company. SO WHAT? So are Pepsi, Coke, McDonald’s, Ford, GM, Chrysler, Freightliner, Michelin, Chiquita, Dole, Microsoft, Google, FedEx, Marriot, American Express, Salisbury’s own Food Lion, and the Secretary of Commerce’s Asheboro Elastics, to name a few.
Alcoa’s Yadkin River dams generate more than $40 million a year in energy. FALSE. Alcoa’s gross revenue for 2008-2010 averaged $29.5 million/year, net income $7.75 million. It might be important to make a distinction between "gross" and "net". Source: Audited financial statement by Price Waterhouse Coopers
The law says the river and the water belong to us. FALSE. The law says title to riverbed land belongs to the state IF the river was navigable in its natural condition at the time of statehood (1789) by the types of crafts used during that period. Otherwise, in North Carolina title to riverbed land belongs to adjacent property owners. It has always been widely accepted that the Pee Dee River was navigable from its mouth in Winyah Bay near Georgetown, SC to Cheraw, SC. The Yadkin River has never been found, by law, to have been navigable. Source: USACE Yadkin River Basin Navigability Study
Alcoa bought and paid for approximately 36,000 acres of land, approximately 23,000 acres located below the river and lakes. Alcoa pays approximately $1 million per year in property taxes.
The Yadkin Riverkeeper filed a “Request for Declaratory Judgment” for a ruling on the river’s navigability and ownsership with the NC Department of Administration in December 2011. In January 2012 the request was denied. Source: NC Department of Administration
The pubic does not “own”, but has the right to use the Yadkin River for fishing, boating, recreation, etc. Municipalities and industries draw water from the Yadkin River. NC and FERC grant withdrawal permits. Relicensing Alcoa’s hydroelectric dams would not change that.
The lease is up. FALSE. There is no lease. There has never been a lease. The State does not own anything to lease to Alcoa.
Alcoa exclusively controls the Yadkin River. FALSE. Alcoa operates under the terms and conditions of a license with FERC, negotiated and agreed to by over twenty federal, state and local governments as well as private organizations. Alcoa is governed by federal and state laws and regulatory agencies. Alcoa could not even give DOT permission to build the new I-85 bridge across Alcoa's own property without FERC's approval. The provisions of the FERC license are legally enforceable. Source: Relicensing Settlement Agreement; RSA Signatories
Alcoa broke its promise to provide jobs for the duration of the 1958 contract, and no longer provides jobs. DISTORTED. Alcoa provided jobs at the Badin Works for 48 of the 50 years of the 1958 contract. Since closing the Badin Works plant, Alcoa has invested over $10 million to redevelop the site into the Badin Business Park. Alcoa invested in and provided incentives to attract Electronic Recyclers International (ERI) and 200 new jobs to Badin. Alcoa invested significant resources into attracting Clean Tech to Badin. That development also would have involved investment and incentives from Alcoa, a $300 million investment by Clean Tech and 450 direct and indirect high-paying jobs. Alcoa had agreed to a legally-binding agreement to pay financial penalties up to $50 million dollars if those jobs didn’t materialize or remain. Source: Alcoa; Stanly News and Press The same people who are now accusing Alcoa of not providing jobs actively opposed and drove the Clean Tech jobs away.
On the other hand, WSOC-TV in Charlotte has reported that many of the jobs announced (and promised) by the Department of Commerce are not created. Source: wsoctv.com
Alcoa has poisoned Badin Lake with PCB’s, leading to a fish consumption advisory. A LITTLE TRUTH TO IT. Before the use of PCBs in electrical equipment was banned in the 1970s, Alcoa and many many many other industries in North Carolina were responsible for PCBs leaked into our water and air. Alcoa has never denied this, and has worked with environmental agencies to clean up and/or contain the contamination. However,
The Yadkin Riverkeeper claimed in November 2011 that he had new study results, but I don’t know of anyone who’s seen or reviewed them. Meanwhile, Alcoa is awaiting approval of a plan to cap the sediment in Badin Cove, a procedure which has been used successfully elsewhere, and which should put the matter to bed.
Alcoa — unless they suddenly change their ways —would go right on polluting the river for another generation. FALSE. Any pollution came from the now closed and dismantled aluminum plant. The production of hydroelectric power is one of the cleanest forms of energy.
I know from long experience that telling these takeover die-hards the facts is not going to end their use of lies and half-truths. The information has been available to them. People have told them over and over again. They know better. They don’t care.
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