Michigan Sugar, MDEQ say they're working on smell issue - WNEM TV 5

Michigan Sugar, MDEQ say they're working on smell issue

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)
BAY COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

Terry Miller said he's fed up and tired of smelling the smell coming from Michigan Sugar.

"That is just unacceptable. It's unacceptable," Miller said.

Miller is the trustee for the Bay County community of Monitor Township. He says both the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the company aren't doing enough to get rid of the stench.

"It's frustrating to have to deal with a regulatory bureaucracy and a company that is resistant to doing the right thing," Miller said.

Michigan Sugar had previously said all sugar beet processing facilities give off odor and that there is no easy solution to the problem.

Michigan Sugar responded on Friday with a statement from the company’s president and CEO, Mark Flegenheimer:

"Michigan Sugar remains committed to being an industry leader and strong community partner. We have hired a leading consulting firm to investigate technology that could be undertaken in the future. As a result, we plan to pilot a new process beginning this fall that, if successful, would reduce odors over the coming year."

The MDEQ said it’s working on it.

"The DEQ is working with the attorney general's office and Michigan Sugar to try to eliminate the nuisance odors that they're are creating from their waste water ponds," said Chris Hare, MDEQ.

Miller said he can't understand why it's this hard to get a little fresh air in his neighborhood.

"It's not rocket science," Miller said. "I mean they could do aeration more effectively. They could use best management practices. They could use a filtration system. There's all sorts of things they can do to address this problem instead of exposing the public to it."

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