Archives by: Lisa Sorg

Lisa Sorg

About the author

Lisa Sorg, Environmental Reporter, joined N.C. Policy Watch in July 2016. She covers environmental issues, including social justice, pollution, climate change and energy policy. Before joining the project, Lisa was the editor and an investigative reporter for INDY Week, covering the environment, housing and city government. She has been a journalist for 22 years, working at magazines, daily newspapers, digital media outlets and alternative newsweeklies.
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Lisa Sorg's articles and posts

Environment Top Story

Chemours plans to expand its Fayetteville Works site, but hasn’t cleaned up existing contamination

Chemours – the billion-dollar company responsible for contaminating the drinking water of hundreds of thousands of people in the Lower Cape Fear River Basin, the company that is challenging the EPA’s scientific findings that GenX is toxic, the company that after 28 months has yet to submit a revised corrective action plan to clean up polluted groundwater...

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Environment Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

HUD Inspector General: No “reasonable assurance” that ReBuild NC properly spent $2.5 million in Hurricane Matthew disaster relief

A new federal Inspector General's report found that ReBuild NC couldn't provide "reasonable assurance" that $2.5 million in Hurricane Matthew disaster relief funds had been "properly spent," according to an audit dated Sept. 16 and published by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development. If the state can't provide documentation for those expenditures, it must repay those funds to HUD.

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Environment Top Story

NC Attorney General’s Office argues that DuPont’s holding companies should also be on the hook for PFAS liabilities in NC

The historical DuPont corporation -- known in court records as "Old DuPont" -- has parked roughly $20 billion in two “paper companies” (which have no employees, offices or equipment) to shield those assets from legal liability, a lawyer for the North Carolina Attorney General argued before the state Supreme Court today.

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Environment News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Hurricane survivors testify before legislative oversight committee, unveiling the truth about ReBuild NC’s bungled disaster relief program

They arrived with folded papers pulled from their pockets. Some came carrying folders that brimmed with documents neatly arranged in binder clips. Others arrived empty-handed, but hoped to leave with answers. With scores more watching in person and online, survivors of hurricanes Matthew and Florence spoke before a state government oversight committee Wednesday about the injustices they have endured – a direct result of the bungled disaster relief program run by the NC Office of Recovery and Resiliency, also known as ReBuild NC. 

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Environment News Top Story

Monday numbers: Chapel Hill’s – and the planet’s – coal ash problem

In the mid-20th century, Chapel Hill residents unknowingly strolled the streets in a miasma of coal ash. Until federal regulations required the UNC coal-fired power plant to install pollution controls, the ash carpeted the town, its residents -- and its residents' lungs -- in invisible particles. In addition, hundreds of thousands of tons of leftover fly ash was dumped, along with other trash, at what is now 828 Martin Luther King Blvd., the home of the Chapel Hill Police Department.

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Environment Top Story

Lincoln County slow to respond to extremely high levels of cancer-causing arsenic in residents’ drinking water

It's still unclear if the source of the arsenic is naturally occurring or a former lithium mine Before Abby and Jason Hollis bought their 1,200-square-foot house on Laboratory Road in rural Lincolnton, the inspector required them to test their drinking water well, a routine step when purchasing a home.

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Environment News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

508 years: The cumulative amount of time hurricane survivors have been displaced from their homes

ReBuild NC also revises -- upward -- expenditures on motels, other temporary housing for hurricane survivors 508 years or 185,522 days: That’s the total amount of time spent displaced for the 1,774 households receiving temporary relocation assistance from ReBuild NC’s homeowner disaster relief program ReBuild NC, whose formal name is the NC Office of Recovery and Resiliency, sent the information to Policy Watch, which requested the figures under public records law. 

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Environment News Top Story

Community members turn out in force to oppose proposed Yadkin granite mine

Board of Commissioners issues final ruling on controversial proposal to rezone 495 acres Craig Justus stood before the Yadkin County Board of Commissioners with the full force of a community behind him. “Tonight is a very important decision. I would consider this as a legacy vote,” Justus, an attorney representing opponents of a proposed granite mine, said.

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Environment Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Mountaire chicken slaughter plant overwhelming Siler City wastewater treatment facility, which has incurred 80 violations, $110K in fines

State has imposed a moratorium on the Siler City facility for chronic noncompliance, preventing new sewer connections for new industry, housing Downstream from the Siler City wastewater treatment plant, sickness had beset the Rocky River. At least 30 fish, including the Eastern shiner and some species of chub, "were observed with lesions and appeared stressed," Tim Savidge, an aquatic biologist wrote in his field notes to the NC Wildlife Resources Commission. "Gasping, irregular swimming, etc."

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Environment Top Story

Moving the misery around: EPA approves plan to truck contaminated soil from one Black community to another

Contaminated soil from a Superfund site in Navassa will be shipped to one of three landfills outside Brunswick County, likely moving toxic pollution from one non-white or low-income community to another.  The proposed cleanup plan, approved by the EPA in late May, highlights the environmental injustices that occur when counties, regulators and polluters offload their problems to communities of color.

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