Stretching approximately 60 miles from southern Delaware through southeastern Maryland, the Pocomoke River winds through the small town of Pocomoke City, MD, and feeds into the Chesapeake Bay. Agriculture thrives on the fertile land of the Eastern Shore, but close proximity to the highly sensitive Chesapeake Bay Watershed brings environmental challenges that require proactive management. Challenges that Crop Production Services (CPS) of Pocomoke City has faced head-on.
“The Chesapeake Bay Watershed is one of the most sensitive areas in the entire country,” says Jeffrey Harris, manager at CPS Pocomoke City. “So investing in upgraded facilities has been a priority to our operations.”
According to Harris, the facility recently replaced the dry fertilizer storage building and pads and invested in liquid fertilizer storage and loading systems. The facility’s most recent upgrade, a state-of-the-art storm water containment and treatment system, was installed specifically to protect and preserve the local area. The system consists of a series of storage pans and plantings that treat plant runoff by vegetative nutrient uptake.
“This modification to our plant was not due to a state directive, rather it was a proactive approach to treat plant-generated storm water before it reaches the state’s waters,” says Harris.
In addition to facility upgrades, CPS Pocomoke City makes training employees a top priority. Sessions on MSDS interpretation, pesticide signal words and handling hazardous materials prepare workers to handle most any incident. Annual training is conducted on the site’s emergency management plan and each year, employees perform emergency drills and mock scenarios to practice active response.
“We understand there is a risk with our operations and because of this, we operate in a manner that exhibits environmental stewardship,” says Harris. “We consider ourselves professionals in the field of agribusiness and work to impress that to the surrounding community and our customers.”
Note: Crop Production Services (CPS) in Pocomoke City, MD, is a 2012 state Environmental Respect Award winner. For more information on this program, which is sponsored by DuPont, click here.