Are Dairy Farms Destroying the Great Lakes?

According to West Michigan’s WZZM 13 news, dairy farmers are dumping manure into the Great Lakes and its waterways, killing fish:
On an August weekend in 2009, campers in the Port Huron State Game Area began to realize there was something terribly wrong with the Black River.

They were finding dead fish floating on the river’s surface.

Eventually, the cause of the fish kill was traced to an excessive application of liquid cow manure at Noll Dairy Farm in Croswell.
To make matters worse, manure contamination has made large algae blooms a seasonal occurrence in Lake Erie.

Many pig and cow farmers store manure in giant lagoons. Jim Reid, who maintains 200 cows on a dairy farm in Illinois, reports that even his small herd produces a whopping 17,600 pounds of manure daily!

“The problem is you have too many animals in one location, says Lynn Henning, a field representative for Socially Responsible Agricultural Project. Henning describes these lagoons as “toxic soup.

Besides polluting precious waterways, manure lagoons make people living in neighboring areas sick. Local residents often complain of headaches from ammonia. In some places, farm workers have been overcome by these fumes and died.

The best thing we can do to protect the environment, people, and animals is to boycott the industry that abuses them.

For delicious recipes and information on adopting a compassionate plant-based diet, click here.