Whistleblower Reveals Contaminant Leakage From Alcoa’s Dams

Alcoa Power Generating source told Yes! Weekly’s Keith Barber about long term, potentially hazardous problems inside several of the company’s dams. Choosing to remain anonymous due to job security concerns, the source spoke of environmental hazards that include sizeable amounts of oil and grease leaking into the water from facilities that have not been updated since the 1950’s.

Alcoa has also exceeded cyanide contamination by four times the allowable amount on more than one occasion, as Yadkin Riverkeeper Dean Naujoks has pointed out.

“Alcoa has received two Notice of Violations for cyanide exceedances this year. The one in February is 264% over the limit. Poisonous cyanide is now leaching into Badin Lake and into Little Mountain Creek that flows into Lake Tillery from years of Alcoa dumping,” Naujoks said. “The ground water is saturated with it and it will be a problem for years but DENR has done nothing to address this problem.”

Barber also reports that due in part to the state’s inability to conduct its own independent environmental study of Badin Lake, Stanly County paid Clemson University Professor John Rodgers to analyze fish and soil samples taken from the lake near Alcoa’s facility last year. Rodgers linked polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs (a likely carcinogen) to PCB’s produced by Alcoa’s Badin Works facility.