ConAgra doesn’t appreciate proposed nitrogen plant

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It is common for citizens to complain about planned business construction too close to residential areas, but having two corporations at odds over the location of a new nitrogen fertilizer plant is somewhat unusual.

Magnida is a company formed to build a $2 billion nitrogen fertilizer plant in American falls, Idaho; it was formed by a private equity company, I Squared Capital LLC. The funding is being finalized and the state of Idaho has approved the construction permit, but now ConAgra, which has a french fry potato plant near the approved nitrogen plant, has filed an appeal to reverse the state approval.

The french fry plant is operated as a subsidiary of ConAgra by Lamb Weston. The company “recently raised concerns about the proposed plant’s effects on emergency preparedness, odor and water quality,” according to Rocky Barker writing for the Idaho Statesman.

The nitrogen plant has had strong support of Gov. Butch Otter, who has worked with the equity company to line up investors as part of his promise for improving economic development in Idaho. Reports are that construction of the plant will result in 1,900 construction jobs, and operation of the plant once constructed will employ 170 persons. The plant will use natural gas for production of nitrogen fertilizer.

The fertilizer plant has received strong support from many other state and local organizations with a strong environmental statement claiming it will be environmentally friendly, especially compared to a coal-fired plant would be.

Shelby Stoolman, a ConAgra spokesperson, is quoted by Barker as saying, “Our concerns are related to the many outstanding details about the proposed facility that have not yet been shared.”

To read Barker’s entire article, click here


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