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for Alcoa Power Generating, Inc. (Stanly County)
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Alcoa Power Generating, Inc. received a 50-year lease in 1958 to generate hydropower on the Yadkin River. Four dams were built to power the nearby Alcoa aluminum plant which employed 1,000 in Stanly County and the town of Badin. The lease expired in 2008, and the plant closed in 2002. The dams still generate power which nets millions in profit yearly for Alcoa. The dams belong to Alcoa but the water belongs to North Carolina. The governor and Stanly County officials opposed renewal of the lease because the company is making money but not putting much back into the area. The dispute is now in the courts.
For 50 years, Alcoa has controlled parts of the Yadkin River building dams to power its smelting plant in Stanly County. Now, Governor Perdue and concerned citizens are trying to take control of the river back from the company since the plant is closed. Alcoa wants to renew its operating license. Critics of Alcoa say the company has polluted the river, doing nothing to address water quality or the economic or recreational needs of the region. Details of how the state is fighting Alcoa, including filing complaints with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission against the company and a bill to create they Yadkin River Trust Authority to assume Alcoa’s license. Alcoa’s dams are worth billions of dollars and the company is fighting the measures.