Quality of NC air, water, shows improvement, report says
Posted January 8, 2012
Raleigh, N.C. — Environment indicators show significant improvement in air and water quality in North Carolina, according to a report released this week by the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
The 2011 North Carolina State of the Environment Report, released Friday found that air quality has improve substantially since the 1980s, partly because of businesses and industries taking steps to reduce ozone and particle pollution, as well as more stringent federal air quality standards.
The majority of the state’s lakes, streams and rivers also have good water quality and support fisheries and fish habitats, provide drinking water and allow a number of recreational uses, the report found.
About 40 percent of the state’s waters, however, contain pollutants such as mercury, bacteria and large amounts of sediment. In some areas, the report says, excess nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus have threatened water quality in both rivers and water supply reservoirs.