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E-M:/ CAFOs and degraded Lake Erie headwaters
- Subject: E-M:/ CAFOs and degraded Lake Erie headwaters
- From: Janet Kauffman <email@example.com>
- Date: Mon, 31 Jul 2006 12:11:16 -0400
- Delivered-to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Delivered-to: email@example.com
- List-name: Enviro-Mich
- Reply-to: Janet Kauffman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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This morning Environmentally
Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan (ECCSCM) filed a complaint with
DEQ, after 6 tributaries flowing from Vreba-Hoff Dairy CAFOs violated Michigan's
water quality standard for Dissolved Oxygen.
These 6 headwaters tributaries in Hillsdale and Lenawee Counties all flow
to Bean Creek (Maumee basin, Lake Erie).
At 2 sites, DO levels were the lowest they have ever been (0.8 mg/L,
0.4 mg/L), in all the years of our sampling. The Michigan water quality
standard for DO is 5.0 mg/L or higher; 3.0 mg/L or lower is considered fish-kill
Given the extremely low DO in these streams, we sampled two control sites,
similar headwaters of Bean Creek, with no CAFOs upstream. At both control
sites, the DO was 6.1 mg/L.
ECCSCM requested that DEQ sample the liquids used in Vreba-Hoff spray-irrigation.
After multiple violations in the past, the CAFO recently was ordered to
install a partial waste treatment system to reduce water pollution. Solids
are separated from liquid waste, with solids composted. The liquids, however,
are sprayed on fields. These liquids are not tested for pathogen or nutrient
contamination. Rather than improving water quality, recent liquid-spraying
practices seem to be further degrading these headwaters tributaries.