DEQ announces settlement with Michigan Sugar Company

LANSING MI (1/15/2019)- The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) today announced the resolution of an August 2017 lawsuit filed against the Michigan Sugar Company (MSC) in relation to the violation of air and water quality regulations at the company’s Bay City sugar beet processing facility.

“This settlement is an important milestone in addressing nuisance odor and water quality violations, including effluent exceedances from Michigan Sugar Company’s Bay City facility,” said DEQ Director Liesl Eichler Clark. “DEQ is committed to working with the public and Michigan Sugar Company to ensure that this settlement brings about a lasting and satisfactory resolution to the environmental and community concerns.”

MSC has agreed to operate and maintain its wastewater treatment system in a way that complies with its state wastewater discharge permit, reduce the trucking debris from the facility accumulating on nearby roads, and reduce odors from its facility by installing and operating new equipment.

In addition to committing to specific actions to improve water quality and reduce odors at the facility, MSC will also pay penalties, including a civil fine of $300,000 and implement two supplemental environmental projects (SEPs) at a total cost of $262,500. The two SEPs include paying $179,000 for materials for the Saginaw Bay Reef Restoration and paying $83,500 for a tree vegetative barrier to be installed along the new internal road at the facility for dust and noise reduction.

The MSC settlement documents are available at: http://www.deq.state.mi.us/aps/downloads/SRN/B1493/

Contact: Chelsea Lewis, DEQ Public Information Officer, lewisc21@michigan.gov, 517-284-6717; DEQ Media Office, deq-assist@michigan.gov, 517-284-9278

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