Recycling plant to be built in Georgetown

GEORGETOWN, S.C. (WCIV) -- The SEFA Group announced Tuesday that it is planning a $40 million recycling center in Georgetown.

Using proprietary technology, the new facility will consume 100 percent of the coal ash in ash ponds at the Winyah Generating Station. Officials are hopeful that coal ash from other Santee Cooper electric generating stations will also be sent to the new facility.

According to company officials, the facility will be able to process 400,000 tons of fly ash per year.

"We introduced STAR RP to the concrete industry in 2011 when we began operating our Maryland plant. The pure mineral matter produced by out STAR plants provides greater strength and durability in concrete that the fly ashes that were typically used to make concrete over the last several decades," said Tom Hendrix, CEO of the SEFA Group.

The plant will employ approximately 20 people and officials expect payroll to exceed $800,000 per year. In addition to the 20 position, officials said seven positions that had been dismissed earlier in the year would be filled again.

"Aswe continue working to close units atJefferies and Grainger and consider long-term needs for Winyah, Santee Cooperis focused on solutions that are cost-effective and beneficial to theenvironment and the economy,' said R.M. Singletary, executive vice president ofcorporate services. {}"This is a triplewin. It is cost-effective, which means it is responsive to our customers' bestinterests. It utilizes innovative technology to help an important South Carolina industrybe sustainable. And it is an EPA-approved use of ash."

The plan calls for emptying the ashponds at the three stations over the next 10 to 15 years. Santee Cooper officials said the company will provideexcavation, loading and transportation of the ash to the plants where it willbe used.

"This plan also addresses comments by ourneighbors, the City of Conway,and DHEC about long-term placement of the ash, and it does so in a manner thatis responsible to customers," Singletary added. "It's a solution that reallydoes have something favorable for all involved."

SEMA Group currently operated two other plants in Columbia and Newburg, Maryland.