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Mosaic investigates possible tear in lining at Mulberry gypsum stack

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POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Mosaic is investigating a potential tear in its lining at a Mulberry gypsum stack after being alerted by technology implemented in 2020.

The company reported the possible tear to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection last week after a change in water pressure was detected. It involves a gypsum stack at its New Wales facility in Mulberry.

The new monitoring technology was put in place after a massive sinkhole formed on the property in 2016.

“It’s doing its job by talking to us. Now at this point, we have spent about the last week doing some exploratory drilling. At this time, we have no confirmation of a liner tear and no confirmation of a cavity,” Mosaic spokesperson Jackie Barron said.

According to Barron, there have been no off-site impacts found at this time. Conditions are still being assessed.

The DEP’s regulatory investigation is also underway as well as a review to determine if any violations or penalties should be imposed.

“There continues to be no observed water loss in the settling compartment atop the gypstack system and there are no observed changes in the flow rates in the slope stability drains located around the base of the stack,” wrote a DEP spokesperson in a statement. “It is important to note that if it is ultimately confirmed that there is a tear in the liner beneath the south phosphogypsum stack at the New Wales Facility, the facility’s downgradient recovery well is designed to contain any potential release onsite and prevent impacts to groundwater resources.

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