Responses to NGASS Concerns

Q: Is septic tank waste the same as sewage sludge?

A: Septic tank waste and commercial waste are not the same as sewage sludge and are not regulated the same way. Sewage sludge is a concentrated solid byproduct of large-scale waste water treatment that is removed as part of other waste water treatment operations. Sewage sludge is not delivered to or treated at LHR Farms.

Q: Are septic tank waste and grease considered toxic?

A: Septic tank waste and grease are not regulated as toxic or hazardous waste by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or the State because these wastes can be treated with basic systems that allow their nutrient value to be recycled.

Q: What creates the strong odor that has been described?

A: The odors described have been vastly exaggerated. It is important to note that numerous agricultural operations are in operation in White County and within a quarter mile of LHR Farms, including several poultry operations and the county-owned waste transfer station that also generate odor and are possible sources of fecal coliform bacteria. That smell is noticeable from the road and is often attributed to our farm.

Q: Has LHR Farms caused any adverse health issues for employees or neighbors?

A: The farm has never been cited or warned by state or local health department officials that its operations pose a danger to human health or the environment. LHR Farms is committed to having a safe, clean operation and continually tests its crops and water. LHR Farms has tried to maintain good relations with its neighbors as they have moved into the area and intends to be even more transparent with them regarding farm operation and monitoring results to help allay unfounded fears and uninformed speculation.

Q: NGASS says this is a “one of a kind waste facility in the State of Georgia.” Is that true?

A: There are literally thousands of acres in Georgia that use treated wastewater like that generated by LHR Farms to grow crops. This waste recycling is called “land application” and has recognized benefits for Georgia as articulated in the draft State Water Management Plan adopted by the State Water Council on January 8, 2008.

Q: Why has LHR Farms hired a PR company and a lawyer?

A: Recent interest and discussion of LHR Farms’ business operations have raised numerous concerns and misconceptions in the local community. In order to clarify rumors about the farm, and to reaffirm a commitment to doing what is right, LHR Farms has engaged Jackson Spalding to assist in getting the correct information out to the community and to help a farm business better communicate in a transparent way. The legal team handles business for LHR Farms and has been engaged on this particular issue to help defend against unfair attacks on a legally operating business.

Q: Is the air safe around LHR Farms?

A: There is no example or scientific proof anywhere of airborne contamination emanating from any LAS site, much less LHR Farms. The opposition group has made an unfounded claim aimed to alarm our neighboring elementary school.

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