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E-M:/ deq tells epa to back off on animal factories

Enviro-Mich message from Dave Dempsey <davemec@voyager.net>

In a letter recently obtained by MEC from the EPA, DEQ Director Russell
Harding joins Michigan Department of Agriculture Director Dan Wyant in
complaining about inspections the federal agency made this summer in west

"Needless to say, the presence of a federal regulatory inspector in rural
west Michigan did not go unnoticed.  A number of leading producers and
industry representatives contacted our respective departments to inquire
about what they perceived as unwarranted regulatory intervention," Harding
and Wyant wrote.  The letter goes on to tout Michigan's pollution
prevention strategy for Michigan agriculture, drafted by the agriculture
industry in tandem with the state agencies, as the answer to any concerns
about combined animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

"The key to obtaining producer buy-in rests on the state agency's
credibility and commitment to give producers the chance to voluntarily
address environmental concerns before utilizing regulatory compliance
measures," the two directors write.

Not that any additional proof is needed, but the first impulse of
Michigan's DEQ management is always to side with polluters against
enforcers of pollution laws.

Dave Dempsey
Policy Director
Michigan Environmental Council
119 Pere Marquette, Suite 2A
Lansing, MI 48912

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