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Re: E-M:/ CAFO Lawsuits for Illegal Discharges

Enviro-Mich message from "Jeff Surfus" <jeffsurfus@msn.com>

The "Chief Enforcer" for the DEQ Surface Water Quality Division posts this

> Well, I guess we will have to "....agree to disagree.." on this issue.
The DEQ position is that these agricultural producers should have NO
DISCHARGE  (zero, zip, nada, nein, nyet....) to the waters of the State.
Therefore, we should NOT issue them a permit to discharge.  Pretty simple.
> I don't see how you can say that "...DEQ has...failed to do the job."
and that there is a failure to enforce the law.  We sued the violators in
Circuit Court and have court orders preventing any future discharges.
That IS enforcing the law.  It's what we do every day.
> The court orders require corrective programs to protect the waters of
the state; payment of  penalties and cost recovery for the violations
cited in our complaint; etc.   I think that we've accomplished a lot.
What has the Sierra Club accomplished? (...zero, zip, nada, nein,
> Sincerely,

You have got to be kidding me!  Let me get this straight...the DEQ's
position on discharging to surface waters in this state is that if we
don't issue them a permit, they won't discharge!  This is the biggest lack
of accountability strategy I can think of.  It's brilliant in its

I have an idea.  Why doesn't DEQ eliminate every NPDES discharge permit in
the state and then declare that there is no discharge to surface waters in

It's easy to list one's environmental "accomplishments" when one has their
head in the sand.

How much credibility does DEQ have with this kind of strategy?....zero,
zip, nada, nein, nyet....

Jeff Surfus
Project Coordinator
Clean Water Action

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