Conventional wisdom says politicians are the big manure spreaders. But Representative-Elect Kathy Tyler (D-4/Milbank) faces some some new neighbors who want to move in and spread manure around her neighborhood.
According to a new Facebook page, "When Pigs Fly," Tyler and her Grant County neighbors may find a big concentrated animal feeding operation in easy smelling distance of their homes:
Large farmers in Big Stone Township have been approached by Pipestone Swine Resources, LLC of Minnesota to sign up for pig manure disposal on their cropland from a proposed hog confinement facility (14000 pigs) to be built slightly more than 1/2 mile from numerous family homes--Tim Tyler, LeRoy Capp, Duane Hay, Dan Tyler, and more. It is also less than a mile from the Whetstone River and sits on a very shallow water table. We're going to need help and support [Facebook post, When Pigs Fly, 2012.12.09].
Tyler provides this annotated satellite image of the proposed CAFO site and nearby neighbors and water resources:
Tyler says the blue circle at the upper right is her place. She'd better hope there are no prevailing southwesterly winds. She also might want to talk to fellow Rep. Stace Nelson (R-19/Fulton). He knows a thing or two about fighting CAFOs that threaten the water resources and quality of life of his constituents.
Looks like it's time to forge that Dem-Mugwump alliance and sponsor some anti-CAFO legislation!
Related: Hog CAFOs don't just stink: they reduce the viability and liberty of small family farms:
Recent estimates by the Sierra Club state that for every new CAFO established, ten family farms are eliminated or forced to enter into corporate contracts. Today’s CAFO operators are, in [Iowa dairy farmer Francis] Thicke’s words, essentially the “serfs of corporate agribusiness.” At present, four corporations control 59 percent of the hog market. The pigs and feed are provided by these large corporations, but the farmers are responsible for all the liabilities.
As factory farms grow in numbers, family farms diminish across the state. In the end, it seems CAFO proponents may end up being the ones “living high on the hog,” while those of us breathing the toxic fumes are finding new meaning in the expression [Christine Schrum, "Hog Confinement Health Risks," The Iowa Source, August 2005].
They never seem to want to put CAFOs in the Badlands (not the park) where the hogs couldn't do any real damage to the barren land and no one is close enough to enjoy the essence.
Isn't there a way to make fuel out of all that methane? Seems like I saw something on that. It's the 'other' natural gas, right?
It's time for the state to require 3rd party bonding both for performance and possible closure issues before a general livestock permit is issued by DENR to any artificial legal entity. Private individual(living, breathing human being) or general partnership of two or more individuals would be exempt. Don't let AG United get the leg up media wise on this issue. If this was all about economic development for family farmers, they would be doing the farrowing on their own farms. This whole issue of large scale farrowing came about as exemption to the 1972 Family Farm ACt which prohibits corporate farming in SD. Several years, most all farm and ag groups allowed legislation to pass for sow farrowing by corporate interests to be legal. If Amendment E was still on the books, this facility would still be possible but not very likely. Under E, the operation would have to owned in majority by a private individual or a family farm corporation. On this scale, no sane person on a single basis would take on this liability. But as part of an artificial entity using a "corporate shield"-no problem!!
I farmed (now retired) in the Doland, SD area and back in the 80's a similar project was pitched to local farmers. Most liked the idea of free fertilizer delivered to their fields through pivot irrigation until they learned that hog manure contains high levels of salts that, if applied too heavily or too frequently, will over time sterilize the soil for years. Needless to say, support evaporated overnight. If I remember correctly, it was Pipestone Swine then as well.
I am interested in what economic development that young Mr. Hunhof from Yankton is going to support. He's against paying good teachers more, he's against brining business into our state and I bet now he's against these agriculture jobs. What is he going to support or is he just an anti?
I just read the news and found Mr. Hunhoff is not just anti. He is for expanding socialist medicine and padding the pockets of big hospitals. Like the Penny for T Denny tax that they tried to cram down our maws.
full disclosure: just because I benefit from socialist medicine does not mean I want it expanded to bleed my drier.
Grudz, quit lying about Rep. Hunhoff and his consistent support for education and better wages for teachers.
Bill, yes! Milbank already has a 2000-head dairy that produces electricity from livestock waste. Given Barry's comment, it seems that burning that manure for fuel would be better than spreading it on the ground.
According to a Canadian pig site, using anaerobic digester technology, each piglet could generate 98 kilowatt-hours of electricity per year. Multiply that by 14,000 piglets, by 8 cents per kilowatthour, and that's over $100,000 of retail electricity. Or, in practical terms, that's enough energy to run nearly 120 typical houseolds.
By the way, Barry, the pork industry seems to think they can reduce the salt in hog manure that make it safe for mid-season applications to soybeans and corn. Barry, Charlie, should we believe them?
Right, good. So light up the neighbors' houses instead of their olfactory nerves. Maybe even get a new electric energy mascot: Piggy Kilowatt?
Say, Charlie, do you know anything about this Pipestone System outfit? They seem to run as a co-op of sorts through the Pipestone veterinary.
Pro-unionized everybody gets the same raises.
Not pay better for better teachers raises. He was against those.
And, he tried to raise my taxes just for teachers and big hospitals.
Those are indisputable facts.
Grudz, who do you think you're foolin'?
You don't pay any taxes.
You're a dumpster diver.
I buy most of my cigarettes new just like the rest of you guys.
LOL. '...most.' U da man, grudz. Touché.
It certainly is possible that the salts can be removed, but the salts are still an issue. How will they be treated? Can they be stored, incinerated or what? Maybe ice melt.
Reading this brought back some old memories. My mom and dad led the Hutchinson County Wolf Creek coalition of area opponents and fought hard in 2001-2002 with the help of Sen. James Abourezk and really didn't win. http://www.mondata.com/action/pigsdetail.asp?id=397
I post these links here mainly for historical sake for whoever is interested. Here's some related SD legislative history ...
Did that hog farm go forward, Steve? Is it still there?
Yes it did. My dad was killed in a farm/road accident later that fall. It's all a blur so I'm not sure what happened after that- Sen Abourezk came to his funeral and I talked to him maybe a year later. My dad would fight anyone and I was told the County is basically Mennonites who as pacifists wouldnt sue or fight. That could all be nonsense but it is true it took someone to lead the charge and with my dad gone I don't know who picked up the ball. I will say there have been a couple uncomfortable moments as I've met with large farm groups as a legislator when people figure out who I am. I typically laugh if off and say -hey, you support your parents. They understand. But I do have my own opinions on this matter and there is a difference between large hog farms an large dairies at least with odor.
Manure digesters? Look at the cost, the constant replacement of parts due to corosion, and it becomes somewhat less cost effective and energy efficient. I have photos of our local manure digester overflowing and a report about how it didn't work more than it did. Does it work now? We will never know because the new owners are not obligated to give out that news as they are 'private'. If the FDA ever became ethical and withdrew use of antibiotics from animals unless they were actively sick that would be the end of these places. It isn't just the manure that causes problems in the water, it is the medicine, the chemicals from cleaning the facility and other waste issues. On reasonably sized farms the manure is a gift for soil fertility w/o all the extraneous dangerous stuff.
Steve, a super large dairy wanted to come accross the road from us. They would have had, according to their permit, 3 manure lagoons each the size of 15 football fields, 20 feet deep. The amount of sewage would be more than the city of Sioux Falls puts out in a day and is untreated. Most of our neighbors are well-dependent and it would be impossible for 5,000 a.u. to not put a serious crimp in the water supply and quality. It might not smell quite so evil, but it is still like living next to a large unflushed toilet. Please don't think cafo dairies of this size are acceptable if the neighbors object to them.
There was a similar unit that just opened by Pipestone systems in the Parker area. Keep in mind that the owner of the site is a "paper entity". No one single individual is responsible yet numerous individuals come together behind the corporate veil to siphon profits leaving the environmental risks behind with the local residents. It's a 21st century system of colonization. Much like the European merchants who took profits and goods back to England, France, and other countries these investors do not live on site. The profits don't stay in the local community. Sen Abourezk along with numerous other individuals have tried to make county conditional use permits referable. Each attempt has ended in legal roadblocks. Legislation either enacted or initiated would help in this area. What is most disheartening is so called farm organizations like Farm Bureau, Corn Growers, and Ag United that have sold out their hard working, livestock rearing farmers, community residents to special interests they now advocate for. Sad story indeed.
Correction: the group I referred to was known as National Farms, not Pipestone Swine. Sorry for the confusion.
Thanks for the correction, Barry!
Charlie, interesting comparison to the colonial merchant system. You make a very important point about these farms exporting profits and leaving behind the environmental risk. Does the Pipestone System operate any of these large CAFOs in the backyard of its members?
Antibiotics in manure worse than salts:
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