EPD Says It Is Still Reviewing Wilbros Consent Order Comments

A spokesperson for the Georgia Environmental Protection Division says the agency is continuing to review comments made by the public on the proposed consent order with Wilbros.

The public comment period for the proposed consent order closed two weeks ago.

EPD Spokesman Kevin Chambers said that the agency does not have a timeline at this point for concluding its review of comments and making a final determination on the consent order. He adds that the agency wants to ensure it reviews all comments closely.

The EPD issued a proposed consent order with Wilbros in October regarding odor from the Rose Lane facility.

According to the EPD, the proposed consent order sets a number of requirements that the agency believes will reduce the odor.

Those requirements include requiring Wilbros to allow only compostable wastes that should not generate excessive odors, not allowing wastewater to go to Wilbros’ wastewater treatment facility that would overload the system and exceed treatment capacity, installing a cover for the anaerobic basin of the wastewater treatment facility, and putting in place repairs and procedures to reduce odors from the compost operation, among taking other steps.

Officials with the EPD have said the agency believes these are corrective actions that will reduce the odor.

In addition, the proposed order would Wilbros to pay a $25,000 negotiated settlement and submit to third-party odor monitoring.

Last month, the EPD held a public hearing on the proposed consent order at Stephens County High School. During that public hearing, numerous speakers said that reducing the odor was not enough; stating that they wanted it eliminated. Others questioned who would conduct the odor monitoring and asked why the monetary payment was not higher, with many speakers last month expressing a lack of confidence in the EPD to help solve the problem at all.