Washington State Holds CAFO Accountable for Pollution

February 22, 2012

A federal district court in Washington state has found a CAFO (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation) in violation of the Clean Water Act and is forcing it to implement stricter pollution monitoring programs.

Manure (mixed with other waste) from CAFOs is often used as “fertilizers” on agricultural fields or stored in “manure lagoons.” These lagoons often leak or overflow. The toxic waste then seeps into the groundwater, contaminating it for miles around. Giardia and hydrogen sulfide poisoning are common in areas close to CAFOs.

Lynn Henning won the Goldman Prize in 2010 for exposing the immense pollution caused by the CAFO industry in Michigan. She formed Environmentally Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan (ECCSCM) to organize local communities and demand stricter regulations and monitoring of state and federal laws. Henning continues her fight on the local and national level, as the momentum of her campaign brings CAFO violations to light all over the country.