Neighbors still have concerns about NWE's proposed plant – Laurel Outlook

We are concerned about the health and future of our community. NorthWestern Energy’s proposed methane plant near Riverside Park is not in Laurel’s best interest.
• Significant noise disruption – It is anticipated that the noise resulting from the NorthWestern Energy methane plant would be the equivalent of having 54 train locomotive engines running 24 hours a day, year round.
• Degradation of Riverside Park – Riverside Park was recently renovated and upgraded. The impact of substantial noise and constant light will degrade the park.
• Increased air pollution – Laurel air quality does not currently meet the national standards for clean air. Sulphur dioxide levels and other toxins will increase. Noise, light, and air pollution will affect Sundance Lodge Rec reation Area, Riverside Park, livestock, wildlife, crops, people, and the Yellowstone River.
• False promises of economic development – NorthWestern Energy indicates the plant will have eight full time jobs once operational. The application also states that Caterpillar will be operating the plant. Laurel refinery employee count 1200.
• Degradation of cultural landmarks – The July Fourth Fun Run, the legacy of Chief Joseph and The Nez Perce Trail, the Sundance Lodge and hiking area will be affected.
• Thiel road residents – The construction of a methane plant in their backyards and all that means adds to worry and stress about property values, possible leaks, quality of life.
• Degradation of our city – Laurel is blessed with natural topography, bird watching, fishing, hiking, horseback riding, and camping. The Methane plant will permanently scar the beauty of the area and spoil Laurel’s efforts to increase its attractiveness.
The city attorney Michele L. Braukmann has graciously explained to us that due to agreements with Yellowstone County the city of Laurel has no say in the zoning of the land used for the methane plant. But the citizens of Laurel will live with the repercussions of the plant for decades.
Our community deserves better. Therefore we ask that:
• The Laurel City Council convey dismay to the Yellowstone County Commissioners that Laurel citizens and adjacent property owners have no voice in such a major decision.
• The Laurel City Council hire a company to establish baseline noise and air quality levels to ensure that NorthWestern Energy upholds the standards set forth in their application around noise control and air quality.
Priscilla and Jim Bell, Carah Ronan, Fred Labeau, Barb Emineth, Mike and Jeannie Cantrell, Leah Berry, Carol Blades, Greg Childs, Karen Ehresman, Aaron & Kasey Felder, Mike O’Malley,
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Mailing Address: P.O. Box 278
Laurel, MT 59044
Street address: 415 East Main St.
Laurel, MT 59044
Phone: 406-628-4412
Fax: 406-628-8260
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