The coal ash ponds at Duke's Buck Steam Station near Salisbury will eventually have a major spill into High Rock Lake and the Yadkin River. Those highly toxic, heavy metal and mercury laden ponds must to be removed by Duke Energy under careful supervision from the EPA.
For those of us concerned about the water quality of the Yadkin River we need to all work together. That includes actively supporting the following: 1. Remove all coal ash ponds along the Yadkin. 2. Preserve more forested shoreline buffers along the Yadkin. (Which includes working cooperatively with Alcoa to preserve their shoreline and upland property along the Yadkin.) 3. Significantly reduce the massive amounts of sediments and nutrients that enter the river and eventually High Rock Lake from poor waste water treatment facilities, toxic storm water run-off, and poor agricultural, farming and animal raising practices along the Yadkin.
It should be noted that McCrory's (and the Riverkeeper's) current efforts to takeover Alcoa's dams includes contracting out the operation of those dams to Duke Energy. The only outcome from this unfounded takeover effort is the grabbing of $$s for the state (and Duke Energy) at Alcoa's expense. Eventually the public will understand that the takeover efforts have nothing to do with water quality in the Yadkin River. Alcoa's actions with Dissolved Oxygen improvements and PCB remediation over the last several years have already improved the water quality in the Yadkin and their Relicensing Settlement Agreement includes additional water quality improvements that are being blocked by the takeover bunch. (Also note that as McCrory improperly halted the release of Alcoa's 401 permit, with the last minute riverbed ownership lawsuit, he and others in Raleigh were at the same time gutting the NC Department of Water Quality.)
An independent Yadkin Riverkeeper who is unaligned with the special takeover interest, who seek quick found $$s at Alcoa's expense, will support all three water improvement goals listed above. The silence about land preservation along the Yadkin River by the takeover bunch has been disturbing since day one.
Of course land preservation along the Yadkin and water quality are directly connected while the takeover of Alcoa's dams has never really been about improved water quality in the Yadkin.