Bio-diesel plant causes 'environmental mess' in Brookland

by Stan Morris email | twitter

BROOKLAND, AR (KAIT) - "As you can see, oil is all over the ground. We've got glycerin in a tank with a plastic line going up that could easily bust or dry rot...easily flammible...its just a mess," says Environmental Services Director George Johnson.

The mess Johnson describes is the Plant-Diesel facility located on Highway 49B in Brookland. The facility is not currently in operation but is still making an impact on the environment, just not the impact it intended to make.

Some of the oil has seeped through to the other side of the fence. Across the road, an area where children play just feet away.

We spoke with company president Fran McClanahan via phone. She says stress from work caused her to have a stroke, which kept her from being able to take care of the facility.

"It would be that way because the facility has been closed since January 1st. Its not been open since I had my stroke, I wasn't able to be there and get it cleaned up and all," commented Fran McClanahan.

She also says that the governments harsh fines, regulations and other inference destroyed her business.

She adds that the responsibility of cleaning up the bio-fuel plant was with her husband.

"My husband should have taken care of it," said Fran McClanahan.

But when I asked Dennis McClanahan about that, "No sir its not. She owns it, shes the president of it."

The two are in disagreement over the business. They tell me they are seperated but regardless of the responsibility, the condition of Plant-Diesel remains.

Even though there is what the ADEQ calls an environmental emergency at the site, Fran and Dennis McClanahan both tell me they never intended for this to happen.