July 27, 2014

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Reporter: WSAW Staff Email

Biomass Lawsuit Against DNR Dismissed in Marathon Co. Court

A civil lawsuit against the Department of Natural Resources filed by a local group worried about the environmental impact of a biomass project in Rothschild was dismissed in Marathon County Court Thursday.

According to online court records, Marathon County Judge Mike Moran threw out the lawsuit that was filed by Save Our Air Resources, or S.O.A.R. last June. The DNR had made a motion to dismiss the case, and Judge Moran agreed.

The DNR issued a permit allowing the biomass plant to be built and construction has already begun at the Domtar plant in Rothschild.

The plant is a $255 million collaboration between Domtar and We Energies. The plant will burn wood waste to create energy for We Energies customers.

Domtar says the new plant means 400 construction jobs over the next two and a half years.

S.O.A.R has voiced concerns about the plant's proposed particulate matter emissions and its close proximity to a school.

The DNR says the plant's plans satisfy all of the Environmental Protection Agency and local air quality laws. The DNR says an air quality team in Wausau will be assigned to keep tabs on the plant.

It's expected to be built by 2013.


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