Articles in regional publications that pertain to a wide range of North Carolina-related topics.
for Sediment control
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Rapid growth and development on steep mountain slopes threatens water quality in the western counties. Development, along with timbering and agricultural activity, causes sedimentation or erosion and deposition of soil into creeks and rivers.
Sediment is the number one pollution concern across North Carolina. It is the largest nonpoint-source pollutant in the state and one of the main reasons surface water quality has deteriorated. Lane discusses causes of sedimentation and what can be done to prevent or alleviate it.
Scientists believe that issues of limited water supply, sediment pollution, and excessive nitrogen are emerging as recurrent problems. The accepted nutrient application practices across the Coastal Plain may be contributing to unacceptably high nutrient concentrations throughout shallow aquifers. They advise plans to define sustainable rates of nutrient application to the land.
In October, the North Carolina Environmental Management Commission voted to adopt a recommended decision by an Administrative Law Judge who ruled that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources had erroneously interpreted the state’s turbidity rule in a manner that allows water quality standards to be violated so long as sediment control BMPs are being followed. The decision came in a case involving a golf-course developer in Jackson County, water quality certification and wetlands permit.
An apparent loophole in the North Carolina water quality standard for turbidity in surface waters allows exceedances of the numeric standard under certain conditions. Given that sediment is regarded by some to be the major surface water pollutant in North Carolina, the standards may need to be reconsidered.