Skip to comments.Homeowners say WI Law Favors Big Farms, Leaves them Powerless Against Smells, Pollution
Posted on 09/28/2011 11:14:23 AM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin
MAGNOLIA, WI John Adams cant see the nearly 3,000 cows on the dairy farm two miles from his Wisconsin home, but when the wind blows he can smell them.
The stench gives him and his wife headaches. They blame the big farm for contaminating their air and polluting the groundwater well they use for drinking, bathing and watering their garden. They no longer feel safe eating the vegetables they grow.
Adams also blames the state, which requires local governments to grant permits to large farms that meet certain limited criteria, even if there are additional environmental concerns. The rural farming town where he lives tried to impose stricter rules, only to be overruled by the state agriculture department.
Adams and seven neighbors, along with the town of Magnolia, sued the state and the farm in the first case of its kind to reach a state supreme court and the result could set a precedent throughout the Midwest. Similar cases have been filed in Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio and Oklahoma, and two juries in Missouri have already handed out multimillion-dollar awards to homeowners who complained of intolerable odors from so-called factory farms.
At the same time, several states have passed or are considering laws that would make it easier for big farms to get permits. Lawmakers say the move creates uniformity, allowing farms to expand under predictable circumstances, and strengthens one of the few industries that didnt tank in the recession.
Critics argue the laws deprive residents of a voice.
A township should have the right to establish guidelines to keep its people safe, but it doesnt, said Adams, 61. Those of us who are being affected, its like theres nothing we can do.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Blame. A liberal tradition from birth.
I’m sorta curious if this dairy farming community sprang up around Mr. Adams’ house, or if he built his house in an established dairy farming community and is now whining about being in a dairy farming community.
Who was there first—Mr. Adams or the 3,000 cows?
If one doesn’t like the smell of a farm then move stupid.
There is plenty of housing available in Detroit.
The same people will complian about the pric of food after they’ve driven the small farmers out of busines. Why did you move to the area, Mr. Adams? Stay in urban areas, where you have no organic odors, but you have lots of crime, high property taxes and all the other wonderful things associated with crowded suburbian.
Applying the same standards to air ~ (at least with respect to the prevailing wind) ~ the farmer could be required to retain his emissions and dispose of them differently.
A few wiseguys out there running 10,000 hogs in a 100X60 ft barn certainly bulge the envelope but they also attract the attention of the state legislature.
At the moment a few guys with a few thousand cows are doing all the attracting, but it won't take but 10 minutes and that first factory hog farm will open up UPWIND of all the feeding station employees, their families, and their schools.
That's how they do it in the Midwest.
3,000 cows is NOT a small farm.
“Here we go...”
Something wrong with letting the locals decide if they want mega-dairies, or hog operations, or chicken houses, or whatever industrial agri-business operation next door or not?
Same here. We're one of 13 or so homes in a pocket of a farming/recreational area. The neighbor behind me has a horse & mule, and cows are just down the street. The dust is pretty heavy but THEY were here first. We accept the cons along with the pros of living where we are, and believe me the pros far outnumber. :)
People who choose to live near a farm need to understand that farms have animals. Animals make funny sounds and smells. If you cannot tolerate sounds and odors from farms, live elsewhere.
Blame your housing developers for not informing you. The farm and farmers were already there before you arrived.
I grew up near Midland, Michigan ... home of Dow Chemical Company. We lived probably about 12 miles upstream on the Tittabawassee River from the plant, and I can remember going out the back door to school in the morning and the smell would sometimes be enough to knock you over. My dad used to say, “Well, Dow’s making money this morning ...”
Seems Br'r Larson likes to send his manure down the creek and let somebody else handle it.
His kids will get beat up a lot I am sure.
That’s not the issue in this case.
This MUST be taken seriously!!
Video of relevant protest.
Lilly has a lot of urine to boil. You can ask Mitch Daniels about it.
Made the wrong turn and it took me forever to get back out on the interstate ...
Race Day ~ Bwahahahahahaha
The way the article reads, Adams was there first. The farm keeps expanding, tripling its herd while simultaneously going to court to prevent the local government from testing for contaminants.
Maybe it’s just me, but I rather enjoy the faint whiff of cow manure in the air. If you’ve grown up around farms, it’s a pleasant and familiar smell.
Same with horses. I draw the line at pigs.
When they sprinkle the pastures across the way with liquid cow manure, that’s another matter entirely. But that rather horrible and unnatural smell only lasts for a day or so, and then it’s gone. And they get three or even four harvests from the grass, depending on the weather.
Maybe old John can start eating lawyers.....I hear they taste like rat.
I guess plans for the airport fell through.
Probably has to speak through a lawyer due to deficiencies in his English.
(/s) ~ this is about Wisconsin so most of what I said is not exactly a joke.
Now, about this method of his of going into a region with smaller farms that used to be "general farms" and turning it into a monster poop factory! That's SOOOOOOOO North Dakota!!!!!! and right down to the Scanderhoovian name.
I can't believe the idea was that of Br'r Larson ~ has to be an investment group behind it who think of their land in terms of SECTIONS.
I really don’t care. There is little appreciation from these newcomers who want the farmers to change to accommdoate THEM and in no way want to give up a thing when they move to a rural area where the farms have been in operation for generations.
Liberals want all the benefits from owning property as long as they do not have to pay a dime for it, they expect mama government to give them, for free, unlimited views of nature, the sounds and fresh air smell of nature, all the services of city living, just because they bought a quarter acre lot in the country side and put up an eco dome with solar panels on the roof. They expect long time land owners to shut down farms, end gravel quarrying, stop shooting & hunting and provide them with vistas by not developing the land bought long before the eco-nut liberals invaded the area.
In my neck of the woods, the DNR would be on your back in a heartbeat.
That's pretty open farm country when it comes to Souvrn' Wisconsin.
The complainant is a farmer. The offender is a poop manufacturer.
This story stinks of Bull$h*t to me....
At the same time he's been in court to stop the "town" (actually larger than most Midwestern "townships") and he and his goombahs have gone to the legislature for further protections from older established farmers.
If he gets what he wants folks will be building Hog Factories and you just haven't lived until you've been within 15 miles down wind of one of those suckers!
Even Larson is going to be complaining.
If he is buying additional farm land, the farm was still there first.
Sounds like he would fit right in with the corn ethanol mafia.
See this horsedoo often, someone moves into neighborhood where a nearby farm has been for years and the newby begins bitchin about the smell.
Because its hard to shut one down on smell, they then start saying water POLLUTION.
Can’t imagine this going very far in DAIRY Wisconsin.
Tom Daschle sponsored a lot of legislation to make it all possible and in the process disabled most of the smaller dairy farms in Minnesota and Wisconsin. This is one of those areas close enough to urban areas (a mere 100 miles or so) that you can do dairy economically with only 100 cows.
I'd bet Larson is a member of ELCA (they use gay ministers and always take the Liberal position on any issue).
Wait...What? You mean the farmers were there first? And the people who moved in did so knowing that the farmland was there?
Sounds to me like the liberal yuppies want the government to support their stupidity and short sightedness....
Oh yeah. That's what government is best at.
The people there first are being bullied.
Your boy Preibus and his boy Walker are on the side of the factory farm guy with the irregular disposal method for the many tons of poop he produces each day.
Lilly loved to do that big boil on the weekends when all their employees were SOMEWHERE ELSE!
But considering the source (Washington ComPost) I think I'd like to see a more reliable source.
Even the National Enquirer would be better.
And the farmer wouldn't have even been able to expand unless that land was zoned for agricultural use. So it was "farmland" already, before Mr. Adams moved in.
i grew up on a dairy farm.
we were in the middle of nowhere. then the city expanded and gradually over the decades city folk moved out by us and other dairy farms.
they cried foul! it interfered with their bicycle riding they said. blah, blah, blah.
the smell doesn’t bother us.
and then they passed laws outlawing cattle farms from 2/3 of the state.
Yes, there is something wrong with it. When the “locals” decide that their interest in your property should be protected by the government to the detriment of your interest, they have taken your property without compensation.
Lilly had their own horse farm to collect the urine, if I recall correctly, for the premarin (PREgnant MARe urINe).
Exactly what I was thinking.
Went back and read the entire article.
We are both partially right.
Trouble is there is no documented “pollution of THEIR streams as you claim. The only reference is to: “Byron Shaw, a retired University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point professor who specializes in soil and water, said the problem with such enormous farms is that they generate more manure in a small area than can be spread on the fields around them. The excess can end up washing into creeks and other water sources, he said.”
No where is there anything saying THIS farm polluted THEIR streams. You reread the article. The UW Prof says it theoritical, not actual.
The farmer objects to the city exceeding their municiple authority wanting to inspect his facility. If they say its polluting the streams, they can surely test the streams and prove it, The city did not.
The statement about the manure is hardly theoretical ~ I am sure it can be demonstrated to the nth degree!
If they found a single sample of water downstream of that particular operation that had the slightest elevation (which they did) it's time to shut 'er down.
I find it interesting that the Larson guy imagines he can get away with this with no repercussions. There's some other guy named Anderson just 150 Miles SE of there who's looking for a place for a Hog Factory ~ he'll be knocking.
BTW, it took the state of Illinois several decades to shut down an improperly run Hog Factory along I 57. You could actually FEEL the air and there was no way to filter it out of your car!
I grew up in the San Gabriel Valley perhaps 2 or 3 miles from a dairy farm. Best I know the cows were there before our neighborhoods were.
“Is there someone else we can talk to?”
i had rather smell cow poo than perfume.