News | March 29, 2022

Demand better protections against hog waste pollution

The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality will host several in-person public meetings and one virtual meeting that give us the opportunity to influence the hog industry’s efforts to continue putting pollution over people by changing the permits for hog operations.

“All North Carolinians deserve access to a safe and healthy environment, but the many polluting industrial hog operations in our region make that nearly impossible,” says Senior Attorney Blakely Hildebrand.

The cesspit and sprayfield waste management system currently in use at these hog operations causes water pollution and contaminated air.

The cesspit and sprayfield waste management system currently in use at these hog operations causes water pollution and contaminated air.

“It makes people sick and even leads to pre-mature death. And we know that just adding the covers over the cesspits to make biogas will make it worse,” adds Hildebrand.

We’re asking DEQ to incorporate commonsense protections for our water, air, and nearby communities into the general permit for industrial hog operations that will cover hog waste pits to make biogas. At a minimum, this includes stronger requirements to prevent pollution and robust monitoring to ensure compliance.

The upcoming public meetings on the draft biogas general permit will begin at 6:00 pm. Members of the public who wish to speak at the meetings will be able to sign up upon arrival.

  • April 5, 2022: James Sprunt Community College, Monk Auditorium, 133 James Sprunt Drive, Kenansville 28349 (Duplin County)
  • April 7, 2022: Sampson County Exposition Center, 414 Warsaw Road, Clinton 28328 (Sampson County)

A virtual meeting will also be held through Webex at 6:00 pm on April 21:

  • Event password: NCDEQ (62337 from phones)
  • Join by phone: 415-655-0003 | Access code: 2436 024 6769

Members of the public who plan to speak at the virtual meeting should sign up online by April 21.

Public input can also be submitted until May 2 via email to PublicCommentsDWR@ncdenr.gov or by leaving a voicemail at 919-707-9129.

Comments can also be mailed to the following address:

Ramesh Ravella

Animal Feeding Operations,

NC Division of Water Resources

1636 Mail Service Center

Raleigh, NC 27699-1636

Phone: 919-707-9129