While the billboards expressing our concerns about spray irrigation of manure have now been taken down, the threat of this practice still remains in our community. As many of you may already know, Pagel’s Ponderosa CAFO is seeking permitting of this practice, and proposed permitting is already in the works at the DNR. Others are certainly to follow.
It is a travesty that our health department has declared that it is “seeking guidance from the DNR on the practice of spray irrigation of manure”. The DNR’s former deputy Secretary Matt Moroney stated that the DNR “is no longer a strong advocate one way or another” for the environment…an agency which “collaborates” with industry…
The next two dates for the Kewaunee Health department committee meetings are February 8th, and March 14–noon.
At the March meeting Cindy Kinnard has asked Becky Larson from UW Madison to speak. Becky is a engineer, and strong advocate for this practice, and the industry. At the 2 symposiums on manure irrigation which many attended in Stevens Point and Menasha, one thing Becky pointed out is “that transmission of pathogens through airborne routes is unknown and controversial”.
Apart from that, a health professional should be addressing citizen concerns on the Health and the practice of spray irrigation of manure, not an engineer.
In a community already inundated with unprecedented amounts of slurry land spread, it is unfathomable that a new form of disposal–aerosolizing manure into our ambient air–is even being considered.
The Cumulative effects of what is already going on in our county– with contamination of 34% of our tested wells– should be a huge factor in this discussion, and the human health threats we are already aware of regarding manure reduced into particulate droplets which are easily ingested and inhaled.
The Clean Air Task Force claims, “that among airborne particles, the smallest (fine) particles are of gravest concern because they can be inhaled deeply, absorbed into the bloodstream, and transported to vital organs”. The hazard of these particles in the air come with the increased threats of asthma, COPD issues, heart and pulmonary problems, in addition to the high risk groups of the young, elderly and immune compromised individuals.
The DNR has already noted that drift will be assessed as “droplets felt on one skin, or as seen on a pick-up truck windshield”.
Please put March 14, noon, administration building lower level, on your calendar and please become a supporting voice opposing this practice.
The Health department is responsible for the health and safety of Kewaunee County residents.