Carper Statement on Proposed Consent Decree between DNREC, Mountaire Farms

Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, released the following statement after the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) and Mountaire Farms entered into a consent decree to address violations at Mountaire’s Millsboro poultry processing facility. If approved, the agreement would, among other things, require Mountaire to pay a civil penalty, offer an alternative water supply to nearby residents, implement interim corrective measures and upgrade its waste water treatment facility to address nitrate pollution. A third party must also monitor and certify Mountaire’s compliance with the terms of the consent decree, its existing permit obligations and all other remedial measures.

“I’m encouraged that the parties involved could reach this agreement. It is my hope that DNREC will fully explain to the public how the consent decree announced this week will not only help address past violations, but also ensure that long-term measures are implemented in order to better protect Delawareans going forward. This action is a meaningful step in the right direction that, if approved by the court, will better ensure all First State residents have access to clean, safe drinking water when they turn on their tap. There is a good deal of work still left to do to fully remedy this situation and alleviate residents’ concerns, but this announcement is a positive development and one that the public has the right to fully understand.”