New Cape Girardeau business recycles drywall to reclaim gypsum

Friday, October 15, 2010

A business to reclaim the gypsum from scrap drywall for agricultural use will soon be constructed in the 630 Industrial Park in Cape Girardeau.

Jackson contractor Jeremy Goehman started researching ways to reuse his construction scraps and soon put together a business plan for his new company, Renewable Resources.

"In construction, we throw a lot of stuff away," Goehman said. "We wanted to see what else we could do with it."

Renewable Resources will break ground at 9 a.m. Tuesday on 1.64 acres at 1439 Minnesota Ave.

Goehman plans to build a 3,600-square-foot production facility and 2,000-square-foot office and equipment building.

Renewable Resources will offer local construction companies an alternative to dumping building waste in landfills.

According to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, about 248,192 tons of solid waste dumped into in Missouri landfills each year comes from construction scraps. DNR estimates drywall scraps account for about 51,558 tons.

Grinders and sifters will break down the scrap drywall and separate the gypsum from the paper and other materials, Goehman said.

The gypsum will then be processed into a fine powder sold in bulk as a soil supplement used by local farmers and gardeners. People can buy the product directly from Renewable Resources. Over the next three years, Goehman hopes to employ nine people at the facility; his construction company, J. Goehman Construction LLC, employs five.

Renewable Resources will only recycle drywall when it opens in January but will add other recycled materials later, Goehman said.

He is developing processes for bricks to be ground into landscape rock, wood to be ground into mulch and shingles to be ground into materials that can be used in asphalt paving. Cape Girardeau Area Magnet and other city of Cape Girardeau departments worked with Goehman to select a site for Renewable Resources, said executive director Mitch Robinson.

Lorimont Place Ltd. brokered the sale of the property by 630 Inc., formed in 1988 by a group of local businessmen and now owned solely by Earl Norman.

Goehman said the site's proximity to Interstate 55 was the main factor in selecting it.

"There are more agricultural areas that want gypsum down I-55 to the south, and this gives us easy access to get semi trucks down there," Goehman said.

mmiller@semissourian.com

388-3646

Pertinent address:

1439 Minnesota Ave., Cape Girardeau, MO

Map of pertinent addresses

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