MPCA seeks comments from public on proposed feedlot expansion in Nobles County

Contact: Forrest Peterson, 320-441-6972

Marshall, Minn. — Two Nobles County livestock producers are proposing to expand their existing beef and swine operation in Lismore Township.

Joe and Chris Wieneke operate a 1,650-head beef, 1,200-head swine, and 90-head sheep operation in Section 27, and a 2,400-head swine barn in adjacent Section 22 of Lismore Township. They propose to build another total confinement, 2,400-head swine finishing barn at the existing feedlot in Section 22.

As required by state rules, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) prepared an Environmental Assessment Worksheet on the proposed expansion. The public may submit written comments on the Wieneke feedlot expansion EAW until 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 2, 2015.

A National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System/State Disposal System general permit for construction and operation of both facilities is scheduled for public notice beginning Aug. 5, 2015.

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.

Wieneke’s propose to store manure in reinforced concrete storage pits constructed below the new barn, similar to the existing barn. Following a manure management plan, Wieneke’s will pump the manure in the fall and inject it into cropland for use as fertilizer. Manure application sites are located in Lismore and Westside townships.

The worksheet for this project is available by searching for “Environmental Assessment Worksheet” on the MPCA website. It is also available by calling Beth Tegdesch at 651-757-2100. The MPCA suggests addressing written comments to Patrice Jensen at patrice.jensen@state.mn.us, or mailing comments to her at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, 520 Lafayette Road N., St. Paul, MN 55155-4194.

On Aug. 5, 2015, the MPCA will post the draft NPDES/SDS permit on the MPCA's Public Notice webpage. George Schwint at the MPCA is accepting written comments on the NPDES/SDS permit either by email at george.schwint@state.mn.us, 320-894-5866, or mailed to him at Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, 1601 E. Hwy. 12, Willmar, MN 56201.