Local News

Riverkeeper: Johnston development polluting stream

Posted February 27, 2014

— Despite repeated complaints and filings from the Upper Neuse Riverkeeper to the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources, a development in Johnston County continues to pollute Mark's Creek with sediment.

The Riverwood development in Johnston County, owned by the Fred Smith Company, has been polluting Mark’s Creek with sediment since May. Caviness and Cates, a company developing some of the Riverwood sites, has also failed inspections.

Neuse Riverkeeper Matthew Starr described it as a “mud river,” flowing off of the property and into Mark’s Creek, a tributary of the Neuse.

Starr said, in spite of filing repeated complaints with DENR since May of 2013 the pollution continues.

Starr said, “I’m not sure if DENR lacks the resources or the will” to enforce the state’s Sediment Pollution Control Act of 1973, the act that regulates mud, dirt, and silt flow from land-disturbing activities. Sediment is still the number one pollutant in NC rivers, as it was when the Act was passed into law.

WRAL.com has a content sharing partnership with Raleigh Public Record, a non-profit online news organization focused on coverage of Raleigh and local government. Raleigh Public Record: Riverkeeper: DENR Slow to Act as Riverwood Development Pollutes


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  • Fanny Chmelar Mar 7, 2014
    user avatar

    Well, we all know what flows downstream and I think you'll find the source is from a mansion in downtown Raleigh.

  • tjkallam Mar 6, 2014

    It's disturbing that someone listed as a top environmental advisor for the Governors office would allow this to continue. "Pat McCrory's transition office released a list of top advisors consulting for the governor-elect as part of his working groups -- a list filled with prominent GOP donors and politicos.
    Among the names: Fred Smith, a former state senator and developer, is consulting on environmental issues;"

    Read more here: http://projects.newsobserver.com/under_the_dome/pat_mccrorys_closest_transition_advisors_include_big_gop_donors_politicos#storylink=cpy

  • Kathleen Volcjak Mar 6, 2014
    user avatar

    "Development creates pollution." Redfish.

    It doesn't have to. Compared to other pollutants, silt is relatively easy to deal with and the technology - the "silt pond" has been around since I was a child.

  • FromClayton Mar 3, 2014

    Thank you for reporting on this story. This is important to me. Clayton get's it's drinking water from the Neuse...the very water this company is polluting. I hope you will consider joining me in letting Fred Smith Company know you are displeased about this and you would like to see some action taken on their part to clean it up. “Unless Someone Like You Cares a Whole Awful Lot, Nothing is Going to Get Better. It’s Not.” – The Onceler, Dr. Seuss

  • redfish Mar 3, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Nothing new Reb, Development creates pollution. Eastern parts of our rivers have had advisories for years.

  • Rebelyell55 Feb 28, 2014

    Sure hope there is a follow up on this story and why there is no action being taken. This started before the Coal ash blow up, so there should been some action. Make ya wonder don't it?