On Friday, February 17, 2023, Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF), Dorchester Citizens for Planned Growth (DCPG), Friends of the Nanticoke River, ShoreRivers, and Wicomico Environmental Trust filed a legal challenge against Maryland Department of the Environment’s (MDE) newly issued wastewater discharge permit for Valley Proteins’ animal waste rendering plant in Linkwood, to discharge 4 times what they were previously permitted.
This is the issue we lobbied on before, and we spoke against it at the public hearing along with about 100 others. Despite the objections, the permit was pushed through during the last days of the Hogan administration.
The environmental organizations are challenging the permit due to the potential for the plant’s pollution discharges to contribute to unhealthy water quality in the Transquaking River, Higgins Mill Pond, and Chesapeake Bay. The lawsuit was filed in Dorchester County Circuit Court.
The lawsuit seeks to remand the permit back to Maryland Department of the Environment so the agency can address deficiencies, protect water quality and communities from harm, and fully comply with the law.
Here's Fred Pomeroy of DCPG and a ShoreRivers employee taking a water sample from the Transquaking, with the Valley Proteins plant in the background.