The manager for two new biomass power plants spoke with Madison County Rotarians Oct. 25 about the new facilities.

David Groves, who works for Veolia, the company that has a 20-year contract to run power facilities in Colbert and Carnesville, touted the sites as among the most efficient biomass plants in the world. He explained that the plants, owned by Georgia Renewable Power (GRP), have a heat rate of 11,500 "BTU" (British Thermal Unit), adding that 15,000 to 16,000 is more typical for biomass plants and less efficient than GRP.

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(3) comments

John Carlucci

It has come to light that the plant is importing railroad ties from other states to use for this process. This brings up two matters of concern. First, railroad ties are treated with

creosote. This chemical is a known carcinogen. This process of burning creosote treated wood will release carcinogenic particles int the atmosphere. This is a danger to all of us, especially people that live close by and the plant workers who will be subject to constant exposure. Second, importing out of state railroad ties has the potential to bring with it, non-native species of termites and bark beetles. Here is a link to an article detailing the dangers of creosote: https://www.hunker.com/13419211/signs-symptoms-of-creosote-damage. If the plant stuck to the original plan of using left over, untreated wood from construction sites there would be less concern, but all of us should be concerned about creosote being released into the atmosphere. A concerned citizen.

James Cline

Based on the sentiment of the current "leaders", the only way to fix this is replacing every commissioner. We need people to run. I'm a CPA out of the county but I would help fund raise for any potential candidate. People can't protest until they are blue in the face. This is the ONLY solution. GRP isn't going to willingly change what they are doing. They are going to stick to industry talking points, it's legal, and other plants are doing the same thing. A creative board of commissioners who put the people of Madison County first could create financial obstacles to burning toxic debris.

Virginia Moss

Having become gun-shy of pronouncements by Big Business over my 70 years of living, I just can't bring myself to accept anything Big Business has to say. The Republicans were in control of the federal government during the Obama administration. Remember John Boehner's loud remark the very instant Obama was elected? "We will summarily block any and all that the Obama administration attempts to do." And they did. They bowed to lobbying in exchange for campaign donations. This is how our government now works. Corruption in every corner. Constant lying. Fake everything. There is no trust anymore.

I have lost confidence in Madison County's leadership. I had thought we had a pretty good group this time, intelligent and sophisticated. Maybe this power plant is not a threat to the community, but science-based people are saying it is and clearly it is to the surrounding area residents, their animals and all the wildlife and even plants. Who are we to believe? I just don't know, but I sure don't trust Big Business.

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