Major Meat Producers Pollute Waterways More Than Exxon
It’s becoming less and less acceptable for someone to hold anger and contempt for the harmful actions of companies such as Exxon and Dow Chemical without also being just as upset about the impact of factory farms. New data presented by Environment America shows how meat producers are not only on par with other despised conglomerates, yet exceed them in how much waste and pollution they are creating.
Tyson, Cargill, Pilgrim’s, and Perdue all come in the top 15 polluters in the United States, according to data collected from the companies themselves, as they must submit how much pollution they produce to the EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory. Tyson, in fact comes out at number 2, having released over 104,000,000 pounds of waste into waterways between 2010 and 2014.
The waste included in these reports include manure produced by animals at their contracted growers’ farms, fertilizer runoff from the grain grown as food for the animals, and waste from processing plants. Environment America warns against the high nitrate levels of such pollution and the risks to the public and the environment:
A substantial portion of Tyson’s discharges are nitrate compounds. Nitrates can contribute to algal blooms and dead zones, and also pose threats to human health, including “blue baby syndrome” for infants.
The numbers are in. The facts are in front of us. I’m not sure what else is needed to convince people of the terrifying reality of factory farming. The devastating effects are shared by both those who participate in animal agriculture and those who do not. So, just as we share the burden of these effects, together we must unite and say that we will not stand for it, anymore.
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