Neuse River Cleaner, But Mercury Levels Rising

The Neuse River keeper says the river is healthier now than it was 10 years ago, but a recent test turned up high levels of mercury in fish from that very same waterway. Neuse River keeper Larry Baldwin says while the river is cleaner than it was a decade ago and no major fish kills have surfaced since the late 90s, the waterway is battling another issue, mercury. Baldwin says a study of 29 fish taken from the lower Neuse River turned up extremely high levels of mercury, something he says can be toxic to humans. The Southern Environmental Law Center says the mercury gets in the river form coal-fired power plants. The closest one to the section of river in Kinston is in Goldsboro. The state of the Neuse River in Kinston isn't deterring developers. The Lenoir County Tourism director says plans are in the works to build walkways, hiking trails, housing and shops along the riverfront.