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University of NC faces fine for wastewater leak

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has been fined $15,000 by the state for leaking untreated wastewater at an animal research center.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reported the water reached a creek feeding the Haw River.

The newspaper says school officials first suspected that a storage pond was leaking in October, but did not report it until December as they investigated the problem.

Jay Zimmerman with the Division of Water Quality said Wednesday the leak probably contained only very low levels of nitrogen and fecal coliform.

Zimmerman says the school can pay the fine, ask for a reduction or appeal in court. Associate Vice Chancellor Bob Lowman says the school will discuss its options Friday.

Information from: The News & Observer

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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