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Nebraska City News-Press - Nebraska City, NE
  • Cargill Addresses Odor Issues at Nebraska City Plant

  • Officials at the Cargill plant on Industrial road in Nebraska City are investigating an odor originating from one of their waste treatment lagoons.
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  • Officials at the Cargill plant on Industrial road in Nebraska City are investigating an odor originating from one of their waste treatment lagoons.
    The smell by Nebraska City residents as a “sewer” like smell.
    “It just lingers in your house,” said one resident. “It’s really bad.” 
    The smell was first noticed by Cargill employees on March 11, according to a telephone conversation record provided by the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ).
    According to the report, the NDEQ informed Darren Box, the operations advisor for the business unit of Cargill, that they had received a complaint about an “overwhelming odor from the Cargill plant.”
    Box informed NDEQ that the smell was caused by a waste water preheater being set at too high of a temperature.
    The preheater was reset and Box said that the odor was reduced.
    However, the odor has recurred and has since been traced back to an open air aerobic waste water treatment pond, according to Mike Martin, the director of communications for Cargill.
    “We know where the smell is coming from, we just don’t know the exact cause,” said Martin. “We want to be good neighbors and make sure this doesn’t become an ongoing issue.” 
    Martin stated that the odor poses no health risk and that the plant had ordered parts to fix the aeration unit that is used to pump air into the pond to help with breaking down waste in an attempt to get rid of the odor.
    Martin also said that Cargill was planning on reaching out to local businesses in the area to inform them about the issue.  

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