2013 Press Release Archive

Pinnacle/Vlasic Site Review

Tuesday night December 17th at 6:30 PM the Delaware Department of Natural Resources (DNREC) held a public meeting in the Millsboro Town Hall to allow the Public to comment on their findings related to the “Brownsfields” remediation plan for polluted grounds at what was once the Vlassic pickle plant. This site is proposed for the new Allen- Harrim chicken processing plant. This site is in near proximity to many Millsboro area homes and tributaries of the Indian River creating concern that pollutants will migrate from the site to drinking water sources for the local residents and the Indian River. John Austin, Science Coordinator for the Inland Bays Foundation presented the Foundation’s detailed analysis of those findings. View the Pinnacle/Vlasic Site analysis and the Protecting Our Indian River Presentation on Private Well Data

Inland Bays Foundation Board meets with Governor Markell and DNREC Secretary Omara (12/2/2013)

After much preparation, the members of the Board of Directors of the Inland Bays Foundation (IBF) met with Governor Jack Markell and Secretary O’Mara on December 2 in the Governor’s Office to present a summary of its’ findings: REGARDING THE WATER QUALITY OF OUR INLAND BAYS, gathered over two years of meetings with State and Federal elected and appointed officials, scientific experts and residents of Sussex County.

President Ron Wuslich presented a summary of the “Impaired” (Polluted) classification of the waters of the Inland Bays Watershed along with the goals of the IBF. Immediate Past President Bill Moyer led a discussion of issues ranging from land-use planning in Sussex County, the role of the State Planning Office, THE NEED FOR BUFFERS, AND THE ADAPTIBILITY OF THE Watershed Improvement Plan (WIP) now being implemented in the Nanticoke River Watershed TO OUR INLAND BAYS.

The IBF made several recommendations to the Governor and Secretary for improving the water quality of the Inland Bays and were pleased with the positive responses. Both the Governor and Secretary suggested that we convene a second meeting in the near future.

Governor Meeting December 2013

Perdue has Plan for Chicken Waste

Planners get request for new fertilizer mode

Apr. 25, 2013 Written by James Fisher for The News Journal

Engineers working with Perdue Farms on a new method of composting chicken waste told the Sussex County Planning and Zoning Commission that their proposal was more environmentally friendly than the current method of spreading waste on fields as fertilizer.

“The entire point of this whole project is to take existing nutrients that are a byproduct of agriculture and contain them,” said Ken Christenbury, an engineer working with Perdue.

Perdue’s effort also drew praise from an environmental group at a public hearing on Thursday.

Doug Parham, a board member of the Inland Bays Foundation, called the system, involving a waterproof-breathable fabric stretched over large heaps of compost, “a potentially elegant solution ” to poultry industry pollution.

The company is seeking permission to add wood, water and hatchery waste to poultry litter, a mix of sawdust and chicken droppings that is ubiquitous in Delaware and Eastern Shore of Maryland agriculture. Perdue has a plan to recycle chicken litter at the same Seaford- area site, by heating litter, forming it into nutrient-rich pellets and selling it as fertilizer to farms and landscaping companies.

The second method Perdue is trying to launch involves composting the litter underneath fabric manufactured by W.L. Gore. The fabric would allow water vapor to leave the piles of compost, and let air in, but would keep rainwater out.

“It’s a very high-tech fabric,” said Whitney Hall, an engineer. After many weeks of composting, the heaps of litter turn into a nutrient-rich soil, with the bacteria in the litter killed by the heat of decomposition.

“This is a natural process. The only thing we add to the process is air,” Hall said.

Neighbors of the Perdue AgriRecycle plant said they were concerned composting would increase the bad odors coming from the plant’s pellet operation.

“Some days when you come home from work the odor is pretty atrocious,” said James Hoskins of OnealsRoad . “I’m just concerned. There’s quite a few chicken facilities around those streets already.”

Company officials said the Gore-made fabric would do a lot to control odors, and that a building to receive litter from haulers would have an air filter.

Shannon Carmean Burton, an attorney with Perdue partner Chesapeake Agrisoil, noted the land is in an agricultural zoning district and that the county’s comprehensive plan encourages related industries in that area.

The commission didn’t take a vote right away on the request.

Contact James Fisher at 983-6772, on Twitter at www.twitter.com/JamesFisherTNJ or jfisher@delawareonline.com