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E-M:/ Musk. Chronicle: Giant Dairy Cited for Polluting County Waters

Muskegon Chronicle Reporter Jeff Alexander has again done a good job of reporting on serious pollution problems with CAFOs, this time regarding a MI Agricultural Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) verified operation which lost its verification in January then was cited for pollution violations in March.  MAEAP is the voluntary program that the Animal Factory Polluter Bills (HB 5711 - 5716) propose to use to substitute for permitting under the Clean Water Act. 


A couple of questions raised by this include: why was this operation was allowed to be MAEAP verified after being cited in 2002 for water quality violations (shouldn’t it have been required to obtain a permit?); and what happens to a CAFO that loses its MAEAP verification -- how soon must they come under a permit and what happens in the interim?  There may be folks on this list who can answer the questions.


Anne Woiwode, Sierra Club



Giant dairy cited for polluting county waters

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

By Jeff Alexander


A massive dairy farm in Bailey is in hot water with the state for applying excessive amounts of liquid manure to its fields and polluting a stream that leads to Mona Lake.

Ryzebol Dairy, at 2190 Squires on the Muskegon-Newaygo counties border, is one of the first farms in Michigan to lose its "good standing" under the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program, according to a Michigan Department of Agriculture official.

The state suspended Ryzebol Dairy's status as an "environmentally friendly" farm in January after investigators discovered the farm was applying excessive amounts of manure to its fields, according to records The Chronicle obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. Ryzebol is one of about 198 large farms in Michigan known as confined animal feeding operations, or CAFOs.

In March, Ryzebol Dairy discharged liquid manure into an unnamed stream that begins on the farm and flows into Black Creek and, ultimately, Mona Lake, according to state records. Owner Brian Ryzebol told state officials the manure discharge was caused by torrential rains that flooded a large manure storage lagoon.

Some nearby residents said they fear the liquid manure that has periodically washed off Ryzebol Dairy's fields could contaminate nearby drinking water wells and surface waters.




©2006 Muskegon Chronicle

© 2006 Michigan Live. All Rights Reserved.




Anne Woiwode, State Director

Sierra Club Mackinac (Michigan) Chapter

109 E. Grand River Avenue, Lansing, MI 48906

517-484-2372   fax 517-484-3108

Enjoy, Explore and Protect -  www.michigan.sierraclub.org


"We know what to do. We have everything we need save the political will - which is, after all, a renewable resource. This is the time. This our moral moment and [I am confident] we will rise to the occasion." Former Vice President Albert Gore, at the Sierra Club Summit, September 2005


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