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Residents Voice Concerns About Cement Plant

By Marina Giovannelli

Wilmington, NC – A panel of scientists and environmental advocates answered questions from residents last night about the Titan America cement plant proposed for the banks of the Northeast Cape Fear River.

Residents asked the panel about the cement plant's mercury emissions, and about how granite mining would affect underground water stores.

Bucky Bruce moved to Wilmington from Fort Myers, Florida, and he told the panel and audience what happened when a cement plant was built near his home in Florida.

"The dust was unbelievable, and there was some contributing estuaries that I fished in and then some inland lakes that were constantly covered in a white dust form the cement plant."

County Commissioner Ted Davis was at the meeting. He says the incentives will reward Titan for investing in the area and creating jobs.

Davis says he encourages people to attend public meetings, and he's disappointed Titan America declined an invitation to the forum.

"I think not going to these public forums does not carry a good message and it doesn't sit well with me because during the meeting when we discussed those incentives, I was told by Titan that they were going to be involved in the community and they were going to talk to people in the community, and they did not show up tonight."

Titan America says it plans to hold public meetings in the coming months.

Titan America has applied for permits to build the cement plant. The Army Corps of Engineers is reviewing the applications to decide whether or not to issue the permits.