June 18, 2013

Unregulated Factory Farms Threaten Water Supply

pollution.jpgA shocking new article in the New York Times raises grave concerns for water supplies that are seriously threatened by massive amounts of toxic animal manure.

Under the Clean Water Act, the EPA is tasked to protect America's waterways from factory farm runoff. It is estimated that between 500 million and one billion tons of manure--three times as much as the human population produces in a year--are generated annually from animals raised for food. Manure lagoons can become so taxed they overflow and seep into water tables, rivers, and streams, creating a toxic mess.

For reasons that are unclear, the EPA has recently backpedaled on two proposed rules. One would have simply gathered basic information from factory farms. The other would have mandated that more factory farms obtain pollution permits from the federal government--something less than 60 percent of farms are currently required to do. And in yet another sad reversal, just last week the EPA announced that no new regulations of feedlot disposal would be forthcoming, although they had promised otherwise.

According to the EPA's own studies, agricultural runoff is the leading cause of impaired water quality.

With the proposal of ag-gag laws, fewer USDA inspectors on-site, and now the retreat of the EPA, factory farmers are operating with decreased oversight, which translates into decreased accountability. This not only affects the animals who suffer horribly on feedlots and in slaughterhouses, but also creates dire human health and environmental concerns.

The best way to help stop the factory farming industry from polluting our water supply and abusing animals is simply not to support it. Visit ChooseVeg.com for amazing tips, tricks, and recipes that make transitioning to a plant-based diet a snap!
 
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