- Associated Press - Thursday, April 26, 2018

DALE, Ind. (AP) - Indiana residents want more information on a proposed $2.5 billion plant that would convert coal reserves into diesel fuel and products to make plastics and gasoline.

Spencer County residents expressed their concerns Tuesday about Riverview Energy’s proposed project at a forum in Dale, The Herald reported . Residents said they’re worried about the plant’s potential health, environmental and economic impacts.

Dr. Erin Marchand, a family physician in Santa Claus, said she’s worried about the plant potentially releasing “hazardous air particles.”

The plant would produce low-sulfur diesel, which is better for the environment, said Stephanie McFarland, a McFarland PR & Public Affairs consultant hired by Riverview Energy.

The plant will create new jobs in the area, said Tom Utter, the executive director of the Lincolnland Economic Development Corporation. Utter has been working to recruit the Riverview Energy project to the area.

“I want to bring something new to the community,” Utter said. “We search and search in a competitive world to find new ways to bring revenues into the community.”

The plant would employ about 225 workers and create about 2,000 temporary construction jobs, Riverview Energy officials said.

The facility plans to use 1.6 million tons (1.45 million metric tons) of coal annually, producing 4.8 million barrels of clean diesel and 2.5 million barrels of Naphtha, which is used to produce products like plastics and gasoline.

The Dale Town Council approved industrial zoning for the proposed project site earlier this month.

The state Department of Environmental Management will hold a public hearing on the proposal, though a date hasn’t been set. The company has also submitted an air quality permit application to the agency, but it’s still being processed.

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Information from: The Herald, http://www.dcherald.com


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