LETTER: The truth about the Mahomet Aquifer

I would like to address your article written on Nov. 9 (“Champaign Council votes to annex land”) about the annexation of land for The Andersons’ possible ethanol plant.

Councilwoman Dodds’ calculations that “each gallon of water the plant uses brings in exactly three one-hundredths of a penny” is not correct. She failed to include two key variables. First, she failed to consider the fact that the aquifer is constantly being replenished. If it weren’t for the rate of recharge, many aquifers would quickly go dry. In addition, she failed to point out that some of the water that is used in the plant would be cooled according to EPA standards, then placed back into the river.

Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) has diligently researched the costs and benefits of bringing an ethanol plant to Champaign. We have concluded that this is a tremendous opportunity for the City of Champaign and if we do not allow this plant to be built, it will be built somewhere else on the Mohamet Aquifer, therefore affecting us exactly the same way. Would we rather be misguided by empty fears or capitalize on this opportunity to bring economic benefits to everyone in the Champaign community?

Brent Battaglia

Director of Press and Public Relations

Students in Free Enterprise