Company gets nod to build drilling fluids plant near BelfieldStark County Zoning commissioners gave a Texas-based company the green light to build a drilling fluids plant near Belfield on Thursday, but not before covering multiple bases.
Stark County Zoning commissioners gave a Texas-based company the green light to build a drilling fluids plant near Belfield on Thursday, but not before covering multiple bases.
Dwayne Lejeune represented AES Drilling Fluids LLC during Thursday’s meeting, which took place at the Stark County Courthouse in Dickinson. He said the company needs a conditional use permit to build three miles south of Belfield because it uses hazardous materials.
“It is a DOT hazardous material. It is a combustible liquid,” Lejeune said, adding that rigs use the fluid when drilling.
Because the company handles hazardous material, commissioners wanted to make sure proper health measures would be taken.
“Your storage will all be in pits then?” Commissioner Larry Messer asked.
Rather than using pits, Lejeune said the company utilizes above-ground tanks when storing hazardous liquids, which are made on-site. Liner will also be placed around storage tanks in case of a spill, he added.
Dennis Richard of Belfield also raised concerns about potential spills.
“If there’s a spill there, is it going to absorb into the scoria?” Richard asked, adding that any runoff would likely flow into nearby water sources, which are used by cattle and eventually flow to Dickinson. He also wondered if any bonding would be involved with the project.
“I don’t believe there’s any bonding that we’re aware of,” Lejeune said. “We have pollution liability insurance.”
Messer also asked how much truck traffic the site would attract, adding that AES Drilling Fluids take part in dust control efforts.
“There will be a significant amount of truck traffic,” Lejeune said, adding that there would be up to 25 trucks a day.
Byron Richard of Belfield, who owns some land surrounding the site, thinks requiring one company to handle dust is asking too much, considering there are other oil-related companies roaming the area.
Commissioner Russ Hoff said signage would have to be implemented in the area. Stark County Emergency Manager Bill Fahlsing said plans to put up signs are already in place.
Before approving the company’s request for a conditional use permit, commissioners said it would have to also obtain any other necessary permits required by the state Department of Health and other organizations.