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Dec 30 - yep, no change in winter application of manure. With no consideration of neighbors at the holidays, no consideration of the goopy ground, freezing up fast with temps dropping fast, 17º this morning, Bakerlads is applying liquid manure along Cadmus Rd east of Morey.

Nov 26 - Fall Newsletter just posted. Highlights: Medina Drain photos THEN (scum, creepy colors) and NOW(clear); Wolf Creek, Adrian-area CAFOs & Terrehaven violations.

BULLETIN: 7 Violations - Terrehaven CAFO, Wolf Cr Hwy near Adrian, was cited for multiple violations, including contaminated runoff from the feed storage and barns flowing into an undocumented “temporary holding pond,”contaminated runoff from the production area flowing “east toward an open field” and “west toward an open field, and eventually to a small pond,” clean stormwater from several buildings contaminated with production area waste. Woody vegetation was growing on the berms of the wastewater lagoon, which "can compromise the integrity of the lagoon liner by root penetration.”
(details from DEQ Violation Notice of Nov. 8, 2013. See more information on our Violations list)
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8-29-13 - Terrehaven with waste heaped, seeping, and (close-up, photo taken from opposite angle) flowing into a black manure pool.

Nov 23 - See results and total data from ECCSCM's 3 Water Monitoring Projects for 2013: Wolf Creek Watershed (River Raisin Watershed), and Medina Drain, Lime Lake Inlet (Bean/Tiffin Watershed). Medina Drain, in particular, shows recovery since the Vreba-Hoff shutdown. Below, see video of minnows in Medina Drain, Sept. 2013. But what will happen when Milk Source LLC moves in with 3,000+ cows in Spring 2014?

Oct 4, 2013 - Health risks to neighbors from Hartland Farms heavy manure application and emissions – see report sent to MDARD and DEQ by local Registered Nurse. Hydrogen Sulfide levels reached 1.2ppm (1,200ppb) in a neighbor's home. The neighbor at this residence is ill, receiving radiation treatments, and on Oct 5 was taken by ambulance to hospital with "extreme stress in breathing." New Mexico, New York, and Kentucky have 1-hour air standards for Hydrogen Sulfide of 10 ppb. This is 1,200 ppb inside a residence! The World Health Organization recommends exposure no higher than 10.6ppb over a 24-hr period. Where can neighbors go to breathe safe air? If not in their own homes?
outside inside
Lower number shows Hydrogen Sulfide level on 10-4-13 at 0.7ppm (700ppb) next to Hartland Farms manure field; on 10-7-13, Hydrogen Sulfide reaches 1.2ppm (1,200ppb) inside a neighbor's house.

Sept 4 - See news clip on WTOL-Toledo, on the MilkSource purchse, including an interview with ECCSCM President John Klein on community and environmental concerns.

Aug 31 — SOLD: ex-Vreba-Hoff CAFOs sold to MilkSource of Wisconsin. See more details.

Just posted:
Summer 2013 Newsletter, with articles on Hydrogen Sulfide emissions, Wisconsin mega-CAFO on track to purchase ex-Vreba-Hoff facilities here.

Aug 9 - serious Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) emissions from Hartland Farms manure application, Beecher Rd & Henning Hwy. The new Drager 2000 H2S meter registered 1.0 ppm (= 1,000 ppb) this afternoon, far above the 1-hour air standard in 13 states. Michigan has no air standard for H2S. New Mexico, New York, and Kentucky have 1-hour air standards of 10 ppb. This is 1,000 ppb! 100 times worse.
Aug 9 - Drager meter near Hartland Farms manure spraying; top number 19.1 is percent Oxygen; second number 1.0 is H2S parts per million.

stench ADVISORY: Aug 1 – Lime Lake area residents, Medina Twp residents near Dillon Hwy: with the imminent sale, apparently within weeks, of ex-Vreba-Hoff CAFOs to MilkSource, a Wisconsin CAFO, consider doing baseline well water tests of your drinking water. If massive applications of liquid manure resume, baseline tests are important, should there be manure discharges or spills. ECCSCM is testing Lime Lake Inlet this summer for baseline data. (See July entry below).

Free water sample bottles with mailer for the Dept. of Environmental Quality Lab are available from your County Health Department or from ECCSCM. Click here for DEQ lab tests and fees. An E. coli test and nitrate test (included in Automated Partial Chemistry test) are especially important.

FIND THE CAFOS IN YOUR AREA – Click on this Food & Water Watch map
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Open Letter to potential buyers of ex-Vreba-Hoff/Southern Michigan Dairies CAFOs

Claims of CAFO Operators – True or False?
CAFO operators often claim: 1) if they have good intentions and enough land for application, liquid manure won’t contaminate streams; 2) if they follow their CAFO permit, liquid manure won’t contaminate streams.
(Answer: FALSE and FALSE)
Fact: all CAFOs here have been cited for manure discharges to streams. Having good intentions – as most here do – has not solved the pollution problem. Having plenty of acreage has not solved the pollution problem. Following the practices allowed in the CAFO permit has not solved the pollution problem.
Why? Because liquid manure on tiled fields is the problem. All fields here are tiled, so liquid manure like rain drains to the tiles and contamination flows to streams.
FOR CAFOs, THE ONLY WAY TO PROTECT STREAMS: 1) use a drier waste system, a pasture-based system with winter composting; or 2) install a municipal-grade wastewater system, so the liquid applied to land would not impair water quality.

July - ECCSCM water monitoring team is testing Lime Lake Inlet, a stream already impaired and now threatened again, and more seriously, if the ex-Vreba-Hoff facility on US-127 is sold and manure application resumes in this watershed. We're testing 4 times this summer for E. coli, Nitrates and Nitrites, Phosphate, Ammonia.
July 29, 2013 – two of ECCSCM water test sites on Lime Lake Inlet, at Lime Lake Rd and at Tamarack Rd

2013 Spring NewsletterHighlights: Taxpayer subsidies to CAFOs and livestock facilities in our area; FBI investigates Vreba-Hoff's Willy van Bakel, and more...

May 11 - Hoffland Farms is spraying fields adjacent to Lake Hudson, on Lake Hudson State Recreation Area public land. Who said yes, it makes sense to spray liquid manure across from a public beach? Who said yes, it makes sense to let manure emissions drive campers from a state campground? Who said, let hikers and anglers hold their noses?
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May 11, 2013 - Lake Hudson State Recreation Area, a dumping ground – the lake lies behind those trees. Hoffland Farms is spraying and stinking the public's air.

May 11, 2013 - Hoffland Farms liquid manure is ponding in the fields next to Lake Hudson.

April 27 – A water-quality team from Illinois Citizens for Clean Air & Water came to Hudson to train ECCSCM on the use of new water monitoring equipment, including hand-held digital meters for testing phosphate, nitrate, ammonia, etc. and in-stream equipment that samples for numerous pharmaceuticals and antibiotics.
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4-27-13 ECCSCM water monitoring training with Northern Illinois University team

April – it's raining cow pies (from Terrehaven CAFO manure hauler) on cars and Wolf Creek Hwy, Adrian. For drivers following, it's off to the car wash, again. These spatter and smear, but at least they're not the liquid slurry that takes 2 runs through the car wash.

early March, 2013 – Ground is still snow-covered, but thaw has begun. CAFOs are back in the fields spraying manure. These conditions pose extreme risk for runoff and pollution of streams in many locations.
3-6-13 Warner manure application on slope, Pentecost Hwy, Franklin Twp
3-6-13 More Warner manure on Pentecost
3-5-13 Hartland Farms manure runoff, along Beecher Rd east of Dowling

Check your calendar – March 21, 2013 at 7 p.m. – Panel Discussion: Less = More: Restoring the Balance to Our Food System
B119 Wells Hall, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
Free and open to the public
See full details of program and speakers, including Dan Imhoff, author of Food Fight and CAFO: The Tragedy of Industrial Animal Factories; Dr. Gail Hansen, Staff Veterinarian, Pew Campaign on Human Health and Industrial Farming; Lynn Henning, Sierra Club CAFO Water Sentinel and Goldman Environmental Prize winner, and others.

Help level the playing field for our farmers


Sign the Petition to Stop Factory Farms!


ECCSCM joins new Michigan initiative: Less = More
support for factory farms means a MORE sustainable Michigan!

Help rein in taxpayer subsidies to factory farms and instead support clean, locally owned and operated livestock farmers. Michigan State conservationist Garry Lee decides how Michigan prioritizes taxpayer dollars that come to the state through the Farm Bill. This year, he can either choose to fund subsidies for polluting factory farms or instead support clean, locally owned, sustainable farms. Over the coming months Less = More will be hosting events across the state to make help Michigan make the right choice.
Learn more at
Read the Less = More white paper on current CAFO subsidies in Michigan – a vision for Restoring the Balance to Michigan's Farming Landscape.



2013 Winter Newsletter now online – print copies will be mailed next week
latest sale of former Vreba-Hoff CAFOs apparently falls through!
E.coli contamination in stretches of River Raisin; CAFO violations in River Raisin Watershed, last 5 yrs.
• grants for River Raisin/western Lake Erie basin water protection project to DEQ and MDARD

January 2013 - Extensive water testing equipment has arrived! ECCSCM recently received both hand-held and in-stream equipment capable of testing for a range of pollutants near CAFOs. Hand-held meters will test for water quality indicators such as nitrates, phosphate, ammonia, etc. with follow-up E. coli and fecal coliform tests if indicated. Other equipment will sample for multiple pharmaceuticals and antibiotics, with analysis by labs using EPA-approved methods. ECCSCM will receive training on the use of all equipment and begin testing as soon as weather permits.