WEST TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Many passionate residents gathered at West Vigo High School on Thursday to voice their opinions on potential changes coming to the area.
The Indiana Department of Environmental Management held a public hearing to gather the public opinion on potential air quality permits given to Wabash Valley Resources. This was so they could get a better understanding of the community’s opinions.
However, most who attended this meeting were not in favor of these permits.
Whitney Boyce is a local resident against these permits because she has land and works in areas that this would affect.
“This fight is extremely personal to me. My family has farmed our land for over 200 years, and this plume is going to be underneath our field. Not only that, my children attend the elementary school that is only half a mile from the expected plume distance,” said Boyce.
These residents have more than one concern when it comes to these permits and the CO2 wells. Susan Strole-Kos is also a resident of this area and goes over what specific concerns people have about these potential additions.
“There are mine shafts out here. We worry about the injections of these wells. We worry about it seeping into our aquifers. We are also worried about the high-pressure pipeline,” said Stole-Kos.
The main concern of those against the permit is that it could potentially affect the environmental future of this area in a negative way. Stole-Kos emphasizes that for some, their land is all that they have to give to their families.
“My children live out here, my grandchildren. I want this land so I can pass it down to my family. It has been in our family for 200 years. It is my job to keep it in our family. We are not rich. Our wealth is in our land and our families. That is all we have to hand down to them,” added Stole-Kos.
IDEM will review and submit all the comments that were made at this hearing. This will have an impact in their final decision-making progress.
The period to be able to submit an official comment to IDEM ends on October 10th.