Plymouth Residents Discuss Sewage Processing Plant
This business has created quite a stink in town. Soil Preparation Inc. processes bio-waste to be made into fertilizer. It’s the odor coming from the plant that many say is taking away from their quality of life.”How are we going to address this community and how we suffer from the odor? That’s the bottom line. That’s why I’m here. To find out what we can do to make it go away,” said one meeting attendee.The Maine Department of Environmental Protection has been contacted numerous times over the years. One of the biggest concerns is how to determine regulating what a “nuisance odor” is.”I hear their frustration. The department’s going to continue to respond to odor complaints as we have, right all along, and if we document a nuisance odor, condition, we can and will address that,” said Maine DEP Environmental Specialist, Carla Hopkins. Some want to know if they should be concerned with their health and their water supply.â€œHow about our water quality? Whatâ€™s happening to all of this? Is it getting into my water? Iâ€™m going to have my well tested next week so I can compare with the other results,â€ said a Plymouth resident.Linda Seavey, a life-long Plymouth resident, told us she had her spring tested, and it came back with high percentages of E. coli.â€œI canâ€™t speak to the water issues. I mean weâ€™re heavily regulated. Weâ€™re heavily tested. I really canâ€™t address any of the water issues,â€ said Soil Preperation President, Phillip McCarthy. Soil Prep. representatives say a new enhanced facility, scheduled to be completed in January of 2014, will diminish odors.”We’re trying to permit a new facility that will dramatically change how the Soil Prep. Plymouth Facility operates,” said McCarthy. Many in town don’t want to wait that long to see results.”I personally am here today to see it either downsize or hoping that it’s going to close,” said Linda Seavey, a life-long resident.That possibility has some worried about job-security.”I was just afraid that it was going to come to the point where they might close it down and then my husband loses his job and then what?”When asked if he would live in town, McCarthy said “I don’t, you know, what, I’d rather not debate the topic right now. I think, I think we are good neighbors. Do we have circumstances that the DEP has requested us to move a lot of material, and fast, and can generate odors, especially if we move it really fast, so you know, in that aspect of it, our goal is to be a good neighbor, to be a good employer, and to help with the agricultural community. I mean theyâ€™re getting fertilizer rates, youâ€™re talking $1,200 to $1,300 a ton, and weâ€™re able to deliver a product to them that helps them out. Itâ€™s a good win-win.â€State Representative Ken Fredette says he will be writing a bill dealing with odor regulations.