Indiana Environmental Agency Assists in Cleaning Up Ethanol Spill at Kankakee River


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SOUTH BEND, Ind. – In response to an ethanol spill that has affected local waterways, including the Kankakee River, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) is actively involved in the cleanup efforts. 

Although the exact volume of ethanol released remains unclear, investigators report residents should not experience issues.

Barry Sneed, spokesperson for IDEM, told the South Bend Tribune earlier this week there is no evidence suggesting any adverse impact on water intakes or wells. This statement comes after concerns were raised by South Bend residents regarding an ethanol leak originating from South Bend Ethanol, situated on the city’s southwest side.

The spill reportedly seeped into Dixon Ditch, ultimately finding its way into the Kankakee River. Last week, witnesses reported the affected section of the river exhibited cloudy water, a noticeable absence of aquatic life, and distressed plant life. South Bend Ethanol had since acknowledged the incident began to formulate a cleanup plan.

Efforts continue to move forward to mitigate the environmental consequences of the spill with residents remaining ever vigilant and concerned for their vital natural resource.


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