MPCA asking for comments on Douglas County beef cattle feedlot expansion by Aug. 17

Contact: Dan Olson, 218-846-8101

Brandon, Minn. — The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is inviting public comment on an Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW) as well as an MPCA feedlot permit for a proposed expansion of the Joe Wagner Farm near Brandon in Douglas County. The proposed project would expand the capacity of the facility from the current 970 beef feeder cattle to a capacity of 4,000 beef slaughter steers and 4,000 beef feeder cattle.

Comments on the EAW and the permit must be submitted separately. Comments are due by Aug. 17.

The farm’s expansion plans include adding:

  • A series of open lots with runoff controls and a partial confinement barn for housing 1,000 head of beef slaughter steers and 1,000 head of beef feeder cattle;
  • Two total confinement barns for housing a combined capacity of 3,000 beef feeder cattle;
  • Two total confinement barns with below-barn poured concrete liquid manure storage areas for housing a combined capacity of 3,000 beef slaughter cattle;
  • One working barn,
  • One asphalt feed storage area with runoff controls;
  • Two lined liquid manure storage areas for collecting open lot and feed storage area runoff; and
  • One dead animal management area.

Solid and liquid manure would be land applied to cropland operated by the farm or transferred to cropland owned by other farmers.

In regard to the permit, during the public notice period people may submit comments, request a public informational meeting, or request a contested case hearing. In regard to the EAW, people may submit comments. The EAW is a preliminary environmental review of how a proposed project could potentially affect the environment. The EAW also helps the MPCA determine if an Environmental Impact Statement, a more in-depth environmental review, is needed.

Copies of the draft permit and EAW are available on the MPCA Public Notices webpage and the Environmental Assessment Worksheet webpage. Copies are also available for review at the MPCA Detroit Lakes regional office. The MPCA will also mail or email these documents upon request. Contact Scott Schroeder in the Detroit Lakes office, 218-846-8134, or by email, scott.t.schroeder@state.mn.us.

Comments on the permit should be submitted in writing to the MPCA’s Scott Schroeder at 714 Lake Ave. Suite 220, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501, by email to scott.t.schroeder@state.mn.us, or by fax to 218-846-0719. Questions may be directed to Schroeder at 218-846-8134.

Comments on the EAW should be submitted in writing to the MPCA’s Kevin Kain at 520 Lafayette Road North, St. Paul, MN 55155, by email to kevin.kain@state.mn.us, or by fax to 651-297-2343. Questions on the EAW may be directed to Kain at 651-757-2482.