RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - After years of delays, North Carolina regulators are moving to strengthen state water-quality standards to include tougher limits on toxic metals like those at issue following the recent coal ash spill into the Dan River.
But representatives from environmental watchdog groups are warning the proposed standards include loopholes that would still allow farms, industries and sewage treatment plants to pour too much pollution into waterways. They spoke at a public hearing in Raleigh on Tuesday.
North Carolina is the only Southeastern state that hasn't adopted nationally recommended limits for dissolved metals such as arsenic, cadmium, lead and chromium-6.
Under federal law, states are supposed to review their water-quality standards every three years. North Carolina last updated its limits in 2007. If approved, the new standards could take effect next year.
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