Senate panel to discuss Zorn bill to stop deep well injection in Monroe County

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn has announced that the Senate Energy and Technology Committee will be holding a hearing on Thursday on his legislation to stop deep well injection of brine waste products in Monroe County.

“I have heard loud and clear from residents about their concerns with the proposed new injection well in Monroe County, and I introduced legislation to protect our water,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “This committee hearing is the next step in doing what we can to ensure the long-term safety of the drinking water for Summerfield Township and Monroe County families.”

The hearing will be at 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 10 in the Senate Hearing Room in the Boji Tower, Ground Floor, 124 W. Allegan, Lansing.

Joining Zorn in testifying during the committee hearing will be Fred Lucas, an attorney representing Summerfield Township; Dave Kubiske, an engineer representing Summerfield Township; Monroe County Environmental Specialist Chris Westover; and Ned Birkey, a local agriculture expert from Spartan Agricultural Consulting.

Senate Bill 387 would prohibit deep well injection in Monroe County where karst topography exists.

Karst topography is a subsurface landscape formed by soluble rock, such as limestone. These formations allow easy movement of underground fluids, including injection materials that could return to the groundwater level and contaminate drinking water sources.

Current law requires both a federal and a state permit to inject brine into underground wells. Zorn’s bill targets state law to effectively rule out siting such a well in these sensitive underground settings.