MPCA seeks comments from public on proposed dairy in Wilkin County

Contact: Dan Olson, 218-846-8108

Riverview Farms plans to build a large dairy farm about 20 miles north of Wheaton in Section 35, Campbell Township in southern Wilkin County.

As required by state rules, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) prepared an Environmental Assessment Worksheet on the proposal. The public may submit written comments on the Campbell Dairy EAW until 4:30 p.m. on Jan. 18, 2017.

Construction would begin in the spring of 2017, and milking in late fall of 2017. Up to 8,674 Jersey milk cows and 1,180 heifers will be housed in a cross-ventilated, free-stall barn with the manure and waste water collected and stored in earthen basins with impermeable covers.

The liquid manure will be removed in the fall and injected into cropland as fertilizer following an MPCA-approved manure management plan. The facility needs a total of about 6,300 acres of cropland for application of the estimated 84 million gallons of liquid manure produced annually. About 19,000 acres of cropland are available.

State agencies use the EAW to help decide whether a more complete Environmental Impact Statement is needed. The EAW covers site location details, nearby resources and other elements, including wells, soil types, water use, manure management, air and odor emissions, and traffic.

A National Pollutant Disposal Elimination System (NPDES) general permit for construction and operation of the dairy farm is scheduled to be on public notice concurrently.

The worksheet for this project is available on the MPCA's Environmental Assessment Worksheet webpage. It is also available by calling Charles Peterson at 651-757-2856. Written comments may be sent via email to charles.peterson@state.mn.us, or mailed to him at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, 520 Lafayette Road N., St. Paul, MN 55155-4194.

A public notice for the general permit will be posted on the MPCA's Public Notices webpage. George Schwint of the MPCA Willmar office will be accepting written comments on the NPDES permit either by email at george.schwint@state.mn.us, at 320-894-5866, or mailed to him at Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, 1601 E. Hwy. 12, Willmar, MN 56201.