The Randleman Dam


The proponents of the proposed Randleman Dam would have you believe the water quality of the Deep River will improve by damming it. The facts, prove just the opposite.

The Deep River has a history of being heavily polluted from urban stormwater, agricultural runoff, and sewage plant discharges. The proposed dam drainage area is so heavily polluted, that twenty five years ago the EPA stated: " Because of surface water pollutants from the High Point area, the reservoir is located poorly for both water supply and recreation. " Today we can add toxic chemical contamination to the list of pollutants flowing into the Deep River.

Congress authorized a proposed plan by the Corps of Engineers to construct the Randleman Dam in 1968. In 1972 the Seaboard Chemical Corporation was allowed to locate a hazardous waste processing facility 1000 feet from the planned future drinking water reservoir. Today, the release of toxic groundwater contamination from the SCC / High Point landfill groundwater contamination site into the Deep River is documented. Rather than cleaning up the Deep River, the water quality has only become more polluted.

The members of the Deep River Coalition and the American Canoe Association are in a legal battle with the State of North Carolina over the Division of Water Quality approving a Clean Water Act, Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the project.

Issues of our 401 case, and information dealing with the High Point sewage treatment plant, Seaboard Chemical Corporation / High Point Landfill toxic chemical contamination, water quality violations, and the interbasin transfer issues are available on the site links.

The Discharge into Lake link includes minuets of a state staff meeting on Randleman Dam stating : "...we make it clear that the water quality predicted for the lake violates WQ (water quality) stds (standards), so that we are not blamed for the condition of the lake and we are not asked to try to fix it once it is impounded. "

The Deep River Coalition is all for fixing the Deep River, but not damning it again with a new impoundment. Water quality is improved by removing dams, not building them.

On behalf of the members of the Deep River Coalition, I would like to thank Dr. Dan Okun for his work in writing a Statement on Randleman Dam. Dr. Okun, Kenan Professor of Environmental Engineering Emeritus, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, states in his introduction:

" ...the construction of Randleman Dam on the Deep River to provide additional water supply for the Piedmont Triad would impose an increased public health risk on those who would be obligated to drink the water from that heavily polluted source."

Margaret Holder, Deep River Coalition Chair