'Poop line' proposal creates fear in Tipton, Shelby counties

TIPTON COUNTY, TN (WMC) - An application filed by the state of Tennessee would allow millions of gallons of wastewater to be dumped into the Mississippi River in Tipton County.

"I think it's catastrophic. I mean there's no other word I know to describe it," Tipton County resident Chris Blair said.

Blair has lived in Tipton County since she was a child. She said she loves the river, and the river is a point of relaxation and pride for her community.

"We fish. We sit down there. We sunbathe," Blair said.

Earlier in October, during a meeting with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, Blair and her neighbors were surprised to hear details of a proposed waste pipeline that could run from the Memphis Regional Megasite in Haywood County right into her community.

"I'm calling it a poop line from Haywood County to our little piece of the Mississippi River," Blair said.

Community member fear waste could drift into the Hatchie River and other surrounding waterways. If that happens, the pipeline could cause problems in Shelby County.

John Duda's home overlooks the river. He commonly catches photos of the wildlife in the area, and he fears the pipeline would impact more than just the people who live close to the waterways.

"To pollute the watering hole from which they survive is going to be devastating," Duda said.

Blair and other critics of the proposal requested 60 days to reappear before the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. The department refused but did agree to reconvene in 30 days.

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