According to the Associated Press, Ohio’s natural resources agency fined the operators of three farming businesses more than $30,000 for polluting nearby rivers with livestock manure, which led to the deaths of tens of thousands of fish.
State officials found that the manure spills killed nearly 67,000 fish, including minnows and sunfish in creeks in Williams, Allen, and Hardin counties.
Unfortunately, spills like this happen all too often as toxins from factory farm runoff, mainly manure and fertilizer, leak into nearby waterways. These toxins promote the growth of algae blooms, which create oxygen-deprived zones that cause marine life to die.
Animal agriculture is a major source of water pollution. In total, animal excrement and agricultural runoff have polluted nearly one-third of rivers in the U.S.
Recently, Tyson Poultry Inc., a subsidiary of Tyson, pleaded guilty to two violations of the Clean Water Act from a 2014 spill after a tank used to store an acidic feed supplement sprang a leak at Tyson’s Aurora feed mill. The spill, which caused major environmental damage, killed about 108,000 fish in Clear Creek. Alimet, the feed supplement, is known to contain ammonia and is extremely toxic to fish.
But it’s not just Tyson. Several other large-scale meat producers ranked higher in toxic releases than Exxon, including Perdue Farms and Pilgrim’s Pride. HP Hood, a dairy company, came under fire earlier this year for regularly violating pollution limits in wastewater since 2014.
Factory farming is not only damaging to human health and the environment but also unspeakably cruel to farmed animals.
Pigs, cows, and chickens at factory farms endure miserable conditions and suffer appalling cruelties, such as extreme confinement, barbaric mutilations, and violent deaths.
It’s abundantly clear that the meat, dairy, and egg industries don’t care about the planet, our health, or the well-being of animals. But you can boycott these destructive and cruel industries by withdrawing your financial support and switching to a compassionate vegan diet.
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