Jobs versus the environment, whichever side you fall on, a new $55 million chicken farm in Hyde County is a done deal.
Indiana-based Rose Acres Farms plans to build 14 high-rise laying houses and three pullet houses near Ponzer. The site will house up to four million egg-laying chickens and 750,000 pullets.
Supporters say the company would provide more than 100 jobs in an area that badly needs the economic boost. But conservationists and environmental groups have said wastewater, ammonia emissions into the air, and the birds themselves threaten the largely undeveloped area.
Company officials say they plan to break ground on the egg farm early next year. The Sierra Club says they will continue to review the permit and weigh their options.