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After the Hurricane: Swine Waste Swirls in North Carolina

food infection

Story at-a-glance -

  • Following Hurricane Florence, at least 132 CAFO waste lagoons had released pig waste into the environment or were at risk of doing so
  • It’s estimated that 5,500 pigs and 3.4 million chickens drowned due to Florence flooding
  • Before-and-after satellite images from the U.S. Geological Survey of a section of North Carolina coastline clearly show massive amounts of brown sludge pouring from inland waterways to the coast
  • Liquefied pig waste may sicken people and contaminate water with pathogens like salmonella, giardia and E.coli
  • Hog waste leaching or overflowing into waterways can also lead to algae overgrowth, depleting the water of oxygen and killing fish and other marine life in expansive dead zones

By Dr. Mercola

When you house nearly 10 million pigs in a coastal state like North Carolina, placing them primarily in low-lying counties near the coast, you've set the stage for inevitable environmental disaster. Yet, many are talking about the devastation caused to North Carolina's concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) by Hurricane Florence as a catastrophe, as though it came as a surprise.


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