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Belmont Populace Turns to Bottled Water

Belmont Populace Turns to Bottled Water

A section of Gaston County residents have opted to drink bottled water, following the spread of news that the water in their wells may not be safe to drink. According to WBTV, state officials on Tuesday told an undisclosed number of families living near Duke Energy coal ash dumps to refrain from drinking or cooking with the water from their wells as it was found out that it was contaminated with toxic heavy metals.
 
Cynthia London resides close to the Allen Steam Plant in Belmont. London says she received a letter saying that her well was being tested, but she is yet to receive the results. Agreeing to heed the advice, London says she is now using the water in her well for the yard. “I am not drinking it, despite the fact that I relish the water from my well,” she said.
The Coal Management Act 2014 and the N.C Department of Environment as well as the Natural Resources (DENR) demanded that the Duke Energy should get into an agreement with privately owned laboratories to gather samples of water supply wells located 1,000 feet of each facility boundary.
 
Since the passing of the orders, only 145 samples have been collected in private drinking water supply wells and five public drinking water systems near Duke’s Energy 32 coal as points. The problem has also affected homeowners who live near Allen Steam Plant, Gaston County, and Belmont.
 
According to Susan Massengale, who works with NCDENR’s department of water resources, any homeowner who is not sure about the status of their well should contact their healthcare provider if they are concerned about their well-being. “Talk to the health community, your personal physician or the Department of Health and Human Services” she added. Massengale also added that DENR was working to establish if the heavy metal deposits found in the wells occurred naturally or were manmade.
 
Only four wells were found to contain high levels of lead content. All the other wells which have been tested so far are within the federal safe drinking water requirements, according to Massengale. This means that even if the wells were public, the water coming from the wells would meet the set federal drinking water standards.
 
Duke Energy said that their wells were in line with the criterion for the federal Safe Drinking Water Act, which is used in the regulation of public drinking water. Even as Duke Energy tried to exonerate itself from the claims, DENR said that a good number of the results in tested wells showed that the water supplies had worrying levels of contaminants that went beyond the State groundwater standards.

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