2016-07-07 / Letters

What Are The Benefits Of CAFOs?

To The Editor:

I read in last week’s paper that an application is being considered to establish yet another factory farm north of Mc- Connellsburg.

Is factory farming good for Fulton County? What are the benefits?

I have been learning about the hog farm proposed south of Mc- Connellsburg, which apparently will include several satellites, also in this county.

I am told that benefits of factory farming include cheap food, a few local jobs and free manure for local farmers.

Cheap pork chops may not seem so cheap as we are paying for the healthcare we will need after consuming the meat of animals raised in close, confined conditions and being fed unnatural food, hormones and antibiotics. Think MRSA and E. coli.

Free manure for local fields will come at a very high price when inevitable bad weather or lagoon failure results in pollution of our streams and air.

The need for clean water and manure storage of 10,000 pigs will be an immense strain on our local water resources. We all live downstream.

Property values near these sites will plummet, possibly throughout the entire county. The cherished quality of life that we are now privileged to enjoy living in this beautiful county is in peril.

How many jobs will these facilities provide? It would break my heart to have a child of mine work in an environment where a callous indifference to the suffering of other sentient creatures is a requirement. We have a profound obligation to treat animals humanely. If we choose to use these animals for our food we owe them a decent life.

Are these CAFOs being encouraged here because large corporations see us as ignorant and apathetic? And poor? Are richer counties encouraging CAFOs?

We also have an obligation to be good stewards of this planet. We have an obligation to learn all we can about these plans for CAFOs and speak out with our dollars and in the courts to attempt to limit them. In other areas of the United States factory farming has been prohibited. We hope this trend continues and will be seen here.

It appears that our local, state and federal governments and the Environmental Protection Agency are unable to act against the big corporations trying to bring factory farming to Fulton County. It is therefore for us, the ordinary citizen, to do our best to prevent it. I have heard about the Big Cove Creek Alliance, and I plan to help support them in their mission against factory farming in our area.

Carolyn Kligerman

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