Dec 20 2010
As aluminum manufacturer Alcoa struggles to keep its hydropower license on the Yadkin River, it is trying to reopen discussions, and start some new ones, with both friends and critics in North Carolina. So far, it may not be getting many takers.
The firm’s hydropower federal license, similar to those around the country which typically are renewed after an extensive process, is on the line. The Raleigh News & Observer summed up the recent problem: “The company recently suffered a setback on the way to a license renewal when it was revealed in a court hearing that company representatives discussed hiding from state regulators information about how water-improvement devices would work. When company e-mail exchanges surfaced, the state revoked a certification Alcoa needs to get the federal license.”
That is not necessarily the end of the story; administrative proceedings still lie ahead. But Alcoa is abruptly in need of more local friends, and it is offering benefits to the area.
The Charlotte Observer asked Governor Bev Perdue about the situation, and she replied (in a video recording), “You can tell them not to call me, and I would bet the Secretary of Commerce won’t be real eager to compromise. It’s beyond that.”