Animal Production And Its Effects On Local And Regional Water, Air And Soil Resources

1605 Words Oct 6th, 2015 null Page
Another downside of the Industrialized Farming Animal Production is that they have created an escalating range of detrimental environmental effects on local and regional water, air and soil resources (Carlin). “More than half, 54%, of all confined farm animals by weight are concentrated in just 5% of the country’s industrial animal production facilities” (HSUS 2008).
The majority of the environmental harm caused by these factory farms results from the high volume of waste that must be stored and disposed of while incessantly confining a large number of animals mostly indoors, “with some operations producing as much [waste] as an entire city” (HSUS 2008). The USDA Agricultural Research Services (ARS) estimated the manure output from farm animals in the United States to be “nearly 1 million US short tons of dry matter per day in 2001”. 86% of this was estimated to be produced by animals held in confinement (Baroni 2006). When applied to the soil at a rate that the land is able to absorb, this animal waste serves as a useful and nutritional fertilizer; however, a prominent feature on factory farms is “their lack of any direct tie to the land and local natural resources,” making them “landless” instead of “land-based” like traditional farms (Tillman 2013). Thus, what should be a cherished byproduct becomes waste that is continually over applied to the land, in-turn, exceeding the capability of the soil and crops to absorb its nutrients. This becomes excessive nutrient loading,…

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