Grain has to be sent somewhere
To the editor:
I have several observations regarding some of the latest views that were published recently relating to the Heartland Co-op.
First of all while Mexico may be considered “the birthplace of corn in the world,” it would be a stretch to say it is the “corn capital of the Americas.” According to figures for the 2013 harvest, Mexico's production of corn was 22.4 million metric tons, whereas U.S. production for 2013 was 355.3 million metric tons. Mexico does not produce enough corn to supply the demand for their people so imports corn from the US.
The suggestion was made that truckers wouldn't be likely to use Nutmeg Avenue to deliver their grain, so would be coming through town on Burlington. I think you would be hard pressed to find any trucker who would choose to travel through town, with slow traffic and numerous stop lights, when there is a four-lane bypass available. The bypass would be quicker and also more fuel efficient, both of which are important factors.
I have no idea what percent of Jefferson County residents have lung problems but I doubt that this facility will increase that problem. I would guess most cases are caused by smoking, exposure to radon gas in people's homes, seasonal allergies, etc.
Another issue that has been raised is concern for damage to county roads due to the trucks hauling grain. What people don't seem to realize is, whether Heartland is here or not, this grain is not going to stay on the farm. It is already being trucked either to local elevators, the ethanol plant, or the large grain terminals on the Mississippi. It is far more efficient to haul grain by way of the railroad rather than by trucks over long distances.
Iowa is often referred to as the bread basket of the world, due to the fact that we have some of the most fertile soil in the world. With 95 percent of Iowa's surface being devoted to the cultivation of crops, it is important that we have the ability to deliver these crops as quickly and efficiently as possible.
While not everyone is happy with this proposed project I would suggest that this is an agricultural state and this is the reality that people need to accept when living here in the midwest.
– LaVon Hostetler, Fairfield