AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF)- Friday morning, state and city leaders celebrated the groundbreaking for a new plant that will bring with it more than 100 jobs to Augusta.

Despite recent vocal concerns about the environmental impact of bringing another plant to Augusta, Aurubis broke ground on the first phase of its new plant.

“It’s a hot day in the CSRA, but what a great day it is. I mean this is going to be the future of our state in many ways.,” said Georgia Governor Brian Kemp.

Aurubis is a multi metal recycling plant based in Germany.

Courtesy Aurubis.

The Savannah River Keeper is concerned that the plant will only add to what she says is already high pollution in Augusta. But they say there’s nothing to worry about.

“We have the latest technology in all environmental treatment of gas, of how we operate our plants. So I can ensure the people in Augusta that our plant will have, as our plants in Europe, hardly if any impact on the environment,” explained Aurubis CEO, Roland Harings.

The plant will recycle electronics, but will mostly deal in copper.

courtesy Aurubis

Commissioner Brandon Garrett said he is confident that the plants operations will be safe.

“Europe has far more stringent environmental constraints on their industries like this. And the fact that they’re bringing this to America– it actually makes me feel good.

While Aurubis does own one other plant in the United States, the Augusta plant will be the first of it’s kind in the country. Garrett said this is a very big deal for Augusta.

“Not only is this groundbreaking technology for America, but the fact that Augusta’s going to be at the forefront of this type of recycling technology– I think it speaks loudly for what Augusta can bring to the global market.”

Construction on the plant will begin soon and phase one is expected to be open for operations by January of 2024.

Courtesy Aurubis.