Chemours holds public meeting, but many residents call it a waste of time

Chemours holds public meeting, but many residents call it a waste of time
A Chemours representative speaks during Tuesday's meeting in St. Pauls. (Source: WECT)
A Chemours representative speaks during Tuesday's meeting in St. Pauls. (Source: WECT)
People gather for Tuesday's meeting in St. Pauls. (Source: WECT)
People gather for Tuesday's meeting in St. Pauls. (Source: WECT)

ROBESON COUNTY, NC (WECT) - The Chemours Company's first meeting with the public since the discovery of GenX in the Cape Fear River left many of those who showed up disappointed.

"This is a publicity stunt," said Michael Watters, one of around 100 people who showed up at Faith Tabernacle Christian Center. "They don't want you to see what's really happening. This is insane."

Chemours representatives made the audience submit questions by paper and repeatedly cut off anyone who tried to speak up. The chemical company's moderator sifted through those questions and summarized them before asking Chemours reps for answers.

Almost all of the residents who attended the meeting left saying it was a complete waste of their time.

Jonathan Webb didn't even make it to the end of the meeting. He was kicked out for speaking out and demanding answers to his questions.

"This is nonsense. This is evil. This should have never taken place in a house of God," Webb said. "This discussion should have never happened here. They're evil. It's all about the almighty dollar."

Watters and others left early on their own.

"I can't listen to lies anymore," Watters said.

Chemours' answer to almost every question was that GenX doesn't pose a risk to human health, but company reps also kept repeating that their $100 million fix would get 99 percent of the chemical out of air and water.

Media members in attendance were told Chemours representatives would only answer questions about what Chemours specifically was presenting. When media tried asking other questions, we were shut down.

We also tried to ask a Chemours media rep when the company will hold a meeting in Wilmington. We were told Chemours is exploring its options and when asked for clarification, Chemours said the same thing.

In an information packet handed out at the meeting, Chemours listed some of the actions taken to reduce air and water emissions. The company says the long-term solutions they will implement will eliminate emissions by 99 percent.

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