What to know about a reviving essential oils plant
The Reviving Essential Oil Plant is a project that is helping restore essential oils in an area of Ohio that was destroyed by the Great Storm of 2014.
The plant is part of the Midwest Restoration Partnership, a partnership of more than 70 companies and nonprofits, including the Environmental Defense Fund, Environmental Working Group and the American Society of Homeopaths.
“I’ve been working with the Restoration Partnership for more than 20 years and have been involved with their mission to restore the region’s heritage,” said Matt Daley, an attorney with the Alliance for Vital Ingredient Solutions.
The restoration partnership was formed after the Great Flood of 2014 in a bid to restore critical natural resources like oil and natural gas deposits and wetlands.
The city of Columbus, which had to relocate its wastewater treatment plant to make way for the plant, said it has received an initial amount of about $15 million from the restoration partnership, which has given the city an estimated $150,000 in operating costs.
The project was completed in February.
“We’re seeing incredible success and we’re going to continue to see that, as we work towards this vision,” Daley said.
Daley declined to name the companies that have donated money to the project.
“Our goal is to have it be able to grow,” Dyson said.
The Reving Essential Oil Project will be housed in the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) and run out of the facility in a warehouse at the Ohio State University.
The facility is scheduled to be up and running in May 2018.
The ODNR has a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the federal government will reimburse the ODNR $300,000 to cover the initial capital investment, according to ODNR spokesman Matt Sturgis.
Sturgides said that the grant money was used to pay for the building and installation of the facilities.
The state’s natural resources commissioner, Kevin Loehmann, said that it is the state’s policy to fund essential oils restoration projects in the state.
“If the state cannot meet its commitments in this regard, then it is up to OD NR to make a determination on how to best fund the project,” Loehs said in a statement.
John Kasich and ODNR Commissioner Sturgises budget director, Matt Stroup, said in their statement that the OD NR is not responsible for the cost of the plant.
“The ODNR will fund this project with the appropriate resources,” they said.
“It is our goal that this facility will be operational as quickly as possible, and that it be maintained as it is.”
The restoration partner plans to begin the process of hiring a maintenance and construction company to build the facility, but Stroup said they would be able “to expand the project in the next few months” once the company is fully staffed.
“They will be able take care of the maintenance and the construction of the plants,” he said.
He said the ODNCR is “working closely with the project partners to make sure they get all of the necessary funds in place.”
The ODNCRD said in its statement that it will be responsible for oversight of the project, but it will also work with the restoration partners to ensure that the project is operating safely and is operating as intended.
The Ohio Department for Environmental Protection has said it will issue permits for the project if the ODNNR determines that it “demonstrates an economic benefit to the Ohio economy.”
The Ohio Natural Resources Agency (ONRA) has also said it is “fully committed” to supporting the project and that the agency is “ready to work with ODNR and ODNCRI to get the project moving.”
“The ONRA has worked closely with OD NR on this project and we will work closely with ONRA on the permitting process,” said ONRA director Dan Miller.
“In the meantime, we are working closely with local officials and OD NR staff on the development of a plan for this important project.
ODNR’s goal is that the facility be operational by the beginning of July 2018.”
In addition to restoring essential oils, the project will also provide water treatment facilities and water pumps for the local wastewater treatment plants.
Ohio Natural Resource Authority spokeswoman Katie Henn said that a final environmental impact report has been submitted to the state, but she would not provide further details.
“All we are asking is that people are aware that the restoration effort will be happening at the local level,” she said.
Ohio Revised Code Section 25.20-11.5 states that the Department of Environmental Protection shall “grant a certificate of approval to any owner, lessee or tenant for the establishment of an industrial, industrial waste water treatment facility in accordance with the provisions of this section.”
The city is not required to apply for a certificate from ODNR before it can open a facility, though Henn noted that the state is the one responsible for issuing certificates.
The Restoration Partnership plans