North / South America
Martin Marietta resubmits application for quarry
Aug, 07 2012
(Jacksonville, N.C.) -- After a rocky reception two years ago, Martin Marietta has resubmitted a special use permit application to build a limestone quarry in the Maple Hill area.
A company representative said the new proposal answers concerns raised by residents who objected to the company's first attempt in 2010.
A resident whose land borders the proposed quarry said the mining company still hasn't answered the community's main concern: the close proximity of four large hog farm lagoons.
A meeting hasn't yet been scheduled by the Onslow County Zoning Board of Adjustment to hear the proposal, said Sue McLaughlin, zoning officer for Onslow County.
The Adjustment Board voted in December 2010 to reject a special use permit request by the mining company to build a 1,800-acre quarry off N.C. 50 with an entrance near Haws Run Road.
The new proposal calls for a 1,831-acre limestone mine in the same area.
There are four hog farms within a mile of the proposed rock quarry with a waste lagoon within 200 feet of the property line where Martin Marietta plans to build its quarry. That lagoon covers seven square acres and holds 30 million gallons of hog waste.
Resident Robbie Yopp said he was also concerned about the roads in the area including Haws Run Road, Harris Creek Road and Dawson Cabin Road.
He said he feels the increased traffic will be more than the roads could safely handle.
"Another accident waiting to happen," Yopp said.
He said sinkholes are a possibility as well.
"Sinkholes are an inherent problem with rock mines," he said. "Combine a sinkhole with a hog lagoon, and our aquifer is ruined."
The area is the location of one of the largest underground water supplies in the region and where many people get their drinking water.
Martin Marietta spokesman Paxton Badham said his company has submitted 23 conditions they are willing to adhere to along with the application which, he said, adequately answers residents' concerns. He said additional study results will be reported at a public hearing.
Badham said the company is dedicated to building the quarry in the area because in the not too distant future Southeast North Carolina will be desperate for a local supply of construction aggregates.
"This deposit contains an abundance of high quality aggregate, the site is as remote or more remote than any of our 30 to 40 other quarry sites in North Carolina, and extensive studies assure that it can be operated safely," he said.
Badham said after receiving a special use permit from the county, the company will seek a mining permit from the state. He said the permitting and regulatory process may take five years.
In 2010, the Adjustment Board determined that Martin Marietta failed to prove the proposed mine would be in harmony with the surrounding area and wouldn't injure property values.
While geologists disagreed whether the quarry would cause sinkholes in surrounding areas, state and local environmental representatives questioned the effect the mine would have on nearby wetlands animals and plants including the Venus fly-trap.
By Lindell Kay
Holcim, SHDA sign cement supply deal. More
Indian cement-makers want green status for power generated through waste-heat recovery. More