Hello, my name is Rick Dove. I manage this website for the Waterkeeper Alliance. You can visit the Waterkeeper website atwww.waterkeeper.org.You can reach me at RDOVE@ec.rr.com. The purpose of this website is to post information and pictures that demonstrate the incredible amount of pollution generated by the practices of the hog industry and the state's failed enforcement effort. The consequences of this pollution are also provided.
My assignment is to work with North Carolina Riverkeepers who monitor hog pollution and its consequences in North Carolina. I do that by helping to document such pollution by air, ground and water. Over the past 16 years more than 80,000 pictures and 100s of hours of video have been compiled. This documentation presents a clear and convincing picture of the environmental problems associated with industrial hog pollution. The Waterkeeper Alliance and its licensed Riverkeepers, Baykeepers, Soundkeepers and Coastkeepers use this evidence in bringing citizen enforcement actions against the hog industry and others who are destroying our nation's waterways.
There are now approximately 2,500 industrial swine facilities raising 10,000,000 hogs in North Carolina's coastal plain. This is a radical change from conditions that existed prior to the mid-1980s. Then, there were approximately 24,000 family farmers raising a little over 2,000,000 hogs. Based upon a study of Dr. Mark Sobsey of the University of North Carolina that compared hog to human waste, these hogs are producing more fecal matter in Eastern North Carolina each day than is produced by all the citizens (combined) in North Carolina, California, Pennsylvania, New York, Texas, New Hampshire, and North Dakota.This incredible amount of fecal matter is constantly being flushed from the confinement buildings where these animals are kept under what are often grossly inhumane conditions. Once flushed, the feces and urine from these animals is stored in the open environment in huge earthen sewage pits called lagoons. These lagoons constantly discharge to the surrounding environment. As the lagoons fill up, the waste is sprayed onto heavily ditched fields under the pretext of growing crops. It is a waste disposal system that results in runoff to the public trust waters. It is a major polluter of the air (ammonia, hydrogen sulfide and methane gases), ground water and wetlands, streams, creeks and rivers.