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Legislators, farmers look for hog waste fix

by 5m Editor
26 March 2007, at 7:37pm

NORTH CAROLINA - It's been a decade since North Carolina banned pork farmers from building new hog waste lagoons.

In that time, environmentalists have tallied the ponds' damage to rivers and land, and neighbors have complained about their overpowering stench. Scientists have proposed new ways to deal with the sewage, but swine producers have swooned at the cost and complexity.

With the September expiration of the lagoon moratorium on the horizon, there are a clutch of proposals at the statehouse on what to do next. While one would simply extend the moratorium for another few years, two others are aimed at resolving the debate.

"People are interested in helping us find solutions now," said Lamont Futrell of Wilson, who leads a grass roots group of small swine farmers. "We're seeing the most interest ever in helping us solve this problem, and even helping turn it into something profitable."

North Carolina is second only to Iowa in hog farming, with $6.7 billion in annual sales, 46,000 jobs, and 10 million animals that produce 13 million pounds of manure and urine each day.

Source: MyrtleBeachOnline.com

5m Editor