Local News

Sampson Co. takes steps toward new power plant

Posted August 5, 2008 1:25 p.m. EDT

— Sampson County Commissioners voted Monday to rezone a property that could yield new industrial jobs for the county.

Fibrowatt, based in Minnesota, turns poultry leavings into electricity. If approved, the new plant would employ more than 100 people.

The vote to change the zoning of the site near the intersection of N.C. Highway 403 and Interstate 40 from residential agriculture to industrial passed 4-1, with Commissioner Malachi Faison dissenting.

Fibrowatt is to submit a proposal to operate a power plant to the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The application process, in which Fibrowatt must prove it can meet state and federal air-quality standards, can take up to a year.

The company hopes to have the plant in operation by 2011.

Jeffrey Wilson, chairman of the board of commissioners, said he trusts that the application process will ease the worries of those who live nearby. Some residents have questioned the traffic and environmental impact of the plant.