FEFCHAK: Rural People Do Matter

FEFCHAK: Rural People Do Matter

Postby Oscar » Sat Apr 21, 2018 8:47 am

Rural People Do Matter

Letter to the Editor - April 2, 2018

Re: Jury won't take smell tour of North Carolina hog farm. ( April 2, 2018 )
[ http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/b ... 96024.html ]

A federal judge decided he won't send jurors for a see-and-sniff tour of a hog growing operation at the centre of a lawsuit claiming industrial scale pork production creates smells too ugly to live near.

Living in rural Manitoba, it was gratifying to read the news article and also about a Supreme Court of Canada ruling whereby companies can be sued for polluting, despite operating within government regulations. This could have ramifications for agriculture.

The report, in the Manitoba Co-Operator, titled "Polluters liable for excessive annoyances", also makes mention and raises the question of whether it strengthens the hand of rural residents complaining about odours from hog barns. ( which I refer to, as factories )

I believe it does. Although the case, for now, only applies to the Quebec civil code, it does set the precedent for all rural residents who have to endure and suffer the stench of hog manure and the environment of its creation.

It is no secret that the hog factories in Manitoba have made news stories and headlines for many years now. People have been complaining, not only about odour but also about health related problems. They have also expressed concerns about the pollution of the environment, the water and air quality.

I also agree "there is a big difference" between the family farm and the industrialized method of producing hogs. That big difference must be seriously addressed by our local and provincial governments.

At present, rural Manitobans are basically at the mercy of the hog industry, the provincial government, and the discretion of municipalities. Rural leaders and especially The Association of Manitoba Municipalities (AMM) have a very important role to play. They have a responsibility to recognize and be cognizant, that there is a huge difference in the normal family farm operation and that of the Intensive Livestock Operations. (ILO's) Changes are required and must be made.

The current dinosaur, Manitoba Farm Practices Protection Act and guidelines, needs to go. It actively precludes a complainant from going to court. What is really needed is legislation precluding emissions (for the human senses and the environmental pollution)

For instance, appropriate regulations and "set-back" standards must be established and put in place to "protect the people", the residents, whose quality of living is being compromised. The 6-0 ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada recognized that "Rural People do Matter."

John Fefchak,
Virden, MB. 204 748 2521
2 April 2018
Oscar
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