Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association
Supply · Service · Stewardship

Seed Companies Step Into Ethanol Plant Contamination Caused by Treated Corn Seeds

Agricultural corn seed giants started working on a containment strategy as Nebraska environmental regulators began taking stock of the pesticide and fungicide contamination at an ethanol plant that processed treated seeds almost exclusively.
Seed companies stepped in and hired a company to take over environmental cleanup at the AltEn LLC ethanol plant, capable of producing 24 million gallons per year, outside Mead, Nebraska, about 20 minutes from the suburbs of Omaha.
AltEn shut down its plant in early February after the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy (NDEE) issued an emergency order to cease operations at the plant on Feb. 4 following numerous environmental violations. AltEn completed shutdown on Feb. 8.
However, cold weather several days later led a pipe to burst at the plant, causing 4 million gallons of pesticide-filled water to flow downstream.
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