PLEASANT HOPE, Mo. — A small town in Polk County, Missouri, is now getting attention from the Department of Natural Resources.

Missouri Prime Beef Packers, a slaughterhouse in Pleasant Hope, recently filed an application to dump treated wastewater into the Pomme de Terre River.

Those who live nearby say they’re worried about the impacts.

“This river really holds a special place in my heart, you know, it’s always been in my backyard,” said John Bledsoe, who grew up in Pleasant Hope, “And it’s home for me.”

Missouri Prime Beef is asking to dump 350,000 gallons a day of treated wastewater into the river.

According to the Department of Natural Resources, the proposal does meet Missouri’s Antidegradation Implementation Procedure.

DNR is waiting until June 26 to decide whether or not to approve the application, allowing time for residents to voice their opinions on the project.

If there is enough interest, the department will hold a public meeting, something Bledsoe hopes will happen.

“This is our chance as a community to band together and tell these people that we’re not just going to let you dump your waste in our stream,” Bledsoe said.

Right now, Missouri Prime Beef is releasing its wastewater onto fields, which the DNR says is not sufficient enough.

In the review of the application, the Department of Natural Resources says there is concern wastewater from the facility could cause degradation to the river, but the slaughterhouse plans to use technology to address that and protect the river.

OzarksFirst reached out to Missouri Prime Beef for comment, but our calls were not returned.