In December, members of the Land Stewardship Project and Toxic Taters filed a citizens' petition for environmental review of R.D. Offutt's major expansion plans in northern Minnesota. R.D. Offutt is the nation's largest potato producer.
This expansion would use more than 166 million gallons of water per year, just as concerns over the unsustainable depletion of Minnesota's groundwater escalate. R.D. Offutt's plans risk contaminating the vulnerable Pineland Sands aquifer with agricultural chemicals, and would require the deforestation of vast stretches of forestland in Becker, Cass, Hubbard and Wadena counties.
The citizens' petition temporarily halted the permitting process and delayed the expansion project. However, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) must now respond to the petition and decide whether to uphold citizens' rights and order an environmental review. This could happen as soon as today or tomorrow.
Contact DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr and Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton TODAY and call on them to order environmental review of RDO's expansion in the Pineland Sands aquifer.
Contact DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr: 651-259-5555 or e-mail him here.
Contact Governor Mark Dayton': 800-657-3717 or contact form.
Governor Dayton/Commissioner Landwehr, I am concerned about the impact R.D. Offutt's planned expansion in northern Minnesota will have on Minnesota's water and the health of our land and communities. This expansion would use more than 166 million gallons of water per year as concerns over the unsustainable depletion of Minnesota's groundwater escalate. R.D. Offutt's plans risk contaminating the vulnerable Pineland Sands aquifer with agricultural chemicals, and require the deforestation of vast stretches of forestland. It is the DNR's responsibility to order an environmental review to investigate and prevent the potential for significant environmental harm. Please order DNR staff to conduct an environmental review, starting with an Environmental Assessment Worksheet.
Thank you for making these two important calls!