N.C. DEQ Air Permit for Smithfield-Dominion Biogas Facility Perpetuates Harms in North Carolina

The Southern Environmental Law Center issued the following statement from Blakely Hildebrand, an attorney at the center, regarding the air permit for a large-scale Align RNG biogas facility issued by the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality.

“We are disappointed in DEQ’s decision to issue an air permit for Smithfield and Dominion’s biogas facility without considering the cumulative harm of this project to our air and water and nearby communities that are disproportionately Black and Brown. Moreover, DEQ issued this permit without complete information from Smithfield and Dominion as to what their industrial project entails. We hope DEQ will listen to community members later this month at its hearing on water permits for just four of the 19 industrial-scale hog operations that are part of this biogas project.”

The Southern Environmental Law Center submitted comments on the draft permit to DEQ that are available at https://www.southernenvironment.org/uploads/words_docs/2020-11-20_-_SELC_Align_RNG_Updated_Permit_Comments_and_Exhibits_1-10.pdf

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For more than 30 years, the Southern Environmental Law Center has used the power of the law to champion the environment of the Southeast. With more than 80 attorneys and nine offices across the region, SELC is widely recognized as the Southeast’s foremost environmental organization and regional leader. SELC works on a full range of environmental issues to protect our natural resources and the health and well-being of all the people in our region. https://SouthernEnvironment.org

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