Still looking for answers

A month ago, hundreds of letters from Swannanoa, Fairview and Alpine Mountain convinced the Department of Water Quality in Raleigh to host a public hearing on Nov. 18 in Asheville. One of the biggest developments in our mountains is finally under scrutiny.

Despite a nice PR gesture and some goodwill commitments a few weeks ago from developer Jim Anthony, The Cliffs at High Carolina still does not want to disclose the amount or the names of the chemicals it will use for the yearlong luxurious, green, fungus-free, insect-free golf course it plans to build on the watershed plateau in the Swannanoa Mountains.

As I am getting ready for the hearing day, I am surprised by the very few of us who committed to come defend the right to chemical disclosure in order to protect our water, wells and springs. Consider what it would be like if you could not drink your own water? The outpouring of letters from our community has been heard by the water authorities. We need to make a good showing to follow through.

Local changes happen when we decide to work for them. Please come to defend your property rights and your water. The Cliffs at High Carolina need to do a better job of communicating with our communities. Their attitude is to say: “Yes, we will do a good job!”—but not to commit on paper to our right to drink quality water free of pesticides and fertilizers.

There are some alternatives to a chemical-loaded golf course: ozonation, wetlands to filter surface chemicals, ultraviolet systems. One-hundred-percent organic golf courses exist and are the future for an environment free of health troubles. Until The Cliffs communicates with our communities in a professional manner, we will question the news that the Tiger Wood Golf Course design is good for our economy. It could very well be a disaster for our health! Please show up to encourage them to commit to our local “healthconomy.”

According to the meeting notice: The public is hereby notified that the Division of Water Quality will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, Nov. 18, starting promptly at 6:30 p.m. at A.C. Reynolds High School. Doors will be open starting at 6 p.m. for seating and registration to speak.

The public is invited to comment in writing as well as during the public hearing. Speaking times will be determined on the day of the hearing depending upon the number of speaking slots requested. Those wanting to speak need to register at the hearing and speaking sequence will be in the order of registration.

— Francois Manavit


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