Waterkeeper Alliance

November 13, 2013

Contamination lawsuits push Duke Energy, N.C., to address pollution

Source: Winston-Salem Journal (NC), November 3, 2013
Posted on: http://envfpn.advisen.com

Look no further than the Carolina coast to see what kind of damage a coal-fired power plant can do to underground sources of drinking water.

Massive groundwater contamination is rendering unusable the private wells of about 400 people in a Wilmington-area community known as Flemington. A potentially toxic plume of arsenic and other chemicals is leaking underground from a dump site at the Sutton Power Plant owned by Duke Energy, and it is heading toward those wells.

A corporate mea culpa of sorts is on its way, too.

Erin Culbert, a Duke Energy spokeswoman, confirmed last week that tests from groundwater wells at the power plant showed that contaminated groundwater was moving toward the Flemington community, about a half-mile away.

So Duke Energy has agreed to pay most of a $2.25 million project to run public water lines to Flemington, the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority announced Oct. 9.

Duke agreed to “proactively invest more than $1.5 million to prevent a potential issue,” Culbert said. Any possible costs between $1.5 million and $2.25 would be split evenly between Duke and the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority, according to Mike McGill, a spokesman for the authority.

Environmental groups saw the threat of contamination for years.…

March 27, 2013

Hog waste spill investigated

Source: The Wilson Daily Times (NC), March 16, 2013
Posted on: http://envfpn.advisen.com

State regulators are investigating a reported hog waste spill that environmental groups say could contaminate the Contentnea Creek and Neuse River.

N.C. Division of Water Quality inspectors on Friday took water samples from an unnamed stream near a Murphy-Brown farm southeast of Stantonsburg. Anti-pollution advocate Don Webb reported the discharge to the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

“It will get into the Contentnea Creek,” Webb said. “There’s no doubt about it. This is bad. This is toxic waste.”

Inspectors said there appeared to be hog waste in the stream, but tests to detect fecal coliform bacteria and other contaminants would take days to complete.

A Wilson County resident, Webb is president of the Alliance for a Responsible Swine Industry, which lobbies for increased regulation of hog farms and the elimination of the lagoon and sprayfield system of treating hog waste.

Webb said he noticed water contaminated with hog feces and urine flowing from a stream near the farm while driving past a fishing camp he owns. The sow farm is off Sand Pit Road outside Stantonsburg and sits on the northern edge of Greene County.

“The biggest concern we have here is we’ve had a major leak from this hog farm and it’s coming down this stream,” said Larry Baldwin, concentrated animal feeding operation coordinator for the Waterkeeper Alliance. “It’s more contamination into the Neuse River, which already has its share of nutrient problems.”

Work crews pumped gallons of brown, viscous water from a stream on the right side of Sand Pit Road to a long trench on the left side of the road Friday. The trench appeared to run downstream from the sow farm.…

January 15, 2013

Poultry farmer seeks attorney fees in pollution case

Read here about how Perdue Farms is seeking over $2 million in attorney fees after it won a poultry pollution case in Maryland.…

December 11, 2012

MD Poultry Suit Coming to A Close

Read here a about closing arguments that have been made in a Maryland Poultry suit.


October 15, 2012

Perdue Lawsuit In MD

Read here about a lawsuit in Maryland claiming pollution of a river by Perdue.…

October 3, 2012

Lawsuit could change chicken farming nationally ; ‘Landmark case’ against farm, Perdue about to go to trial

Source: Capital (Annapolis, MD), September 30, 2012
Posted on: http://envfpn.advisen.com

With the court date fast approaching in the federal lawsuit involving the Waterkeeper Alliance, Perdue Farms and Hudson Farm, direct participants in the case aren’t talking publicly.

George Ritchie, the Baltimore-based attorney for Kristin and Alan Hudson, declined to talk on the record. He also declined to make the Hudsons available for interviews or photos.

Perdue Farms commented through corporate spokeswoman Julie DeYoung, who spoke broadly about the case and its implications.

Assateague Coastal Trust Coastkeeper Kathy Phillips remains a key witness in the case even though she was dismissed as a plaintiff. She declined to comment, instead entrusting ACT board President Tom Jones to speak on the organization’s behalf.

Jane F. Barrett, director of the University of Maryland’s environmental law clinic, which represents the Waterkeeper Alliance, also was not available for interviews.

University spokesman Jeffrey Raymond said the law school couldn’t comment on pending litigation.

Officials at the Maryland Department of the Environment, whose investigation figures in the case, also declined to comment.

The lawsuit over alleged water pollution at an Eastern Shore farm has been waged not only on the legal front but also on the publicity front.…

January 18, 2011

New owner of hog farm promises better management

Publication Date 01/15/2011
Source: Sun Journal (New Bern, NC)
Posted on: http://envfpn.advisen.com

The Jones County hog farm that is the target of a potential lawsuit for alleged pollution of a nearby creek with hog waste has changed hands, and the new owner has also been threatened with the suit.

Donald E. Taylor of Pink Hill said he took over the McLawhorn Livestock Farm Inc. Banks farm about a month before its previous owners were sent a notice about the potential lawsuit that alleges violations of federal clean water and solid waste disposal laws.

Taylor, who is under contract to raise hogs at the facility for the Warsaw-based Murphy-Brown LLC, the livestock production subsidiary of Smithfield Foods Inc. according to the website wmurphybrownllc.com, said he knows there were “a lot of problems” with the farm before.…