Yadkin River faces numerous contamination threats

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Poultry waste, industry waste and aged municipal sewage systems are just some of the Yadkin River's biggest threats, according to Yadkin Riverkeeper Dean Naujoks.

"There are threats and pollution problems in this river basin," said Naujoks. "By the time it reaches High Rock Lake there is more than 100 million gallons of sewage and industrial affluent reaching High Rock every day."

The City of Thomasville is one of the biggest polluters according to the riverkeeper stating Thomasville's aged sewage system has dumped almost 20 million gallons of raw sewage in the past four years.

Salisbury spilled about 4 million in recent weeks and on the Jan. 11 the City of Winston-Salem said it spilled 16,000 gallons of sewage into Yadkin tributaries, due to inflow and infiltration issues.

The state is developing a pollution cleanup plan for the Yadkin River and High Rock Lake though Naujoks fears town leaders who use the river won't all be on board due to the cost.

"I'm concerned there is going to be a lot of push backs, lot of resistance to actually make those investments," said Naujoks. I would argue that we need to make these investments just like we do with roads, schools and libraries."

The Yadkin Riverkeeper is holding a forum on the threats to the river January 27. For more information visit yadkinriverkeeper.org.

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