|Develop requirements that will address concerns regarding transfer and off-site management of poultry waste in the Commonwealth.
|Ended on 8/21/2009
My name is Thomas Jenkins. I am a student at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA and my major is Environmental Studies. My family has a home on the Chesapeake Bay, and I have grown up fishing and duck hunting on its waters. The users of the bay and its tributaries are countless. Everyone in the Baltimore/DC/Richmond/Norfolk area depends on clean water to drink. Fish, birds, and other animals need habitat to live in.
The fact that I'm only a student makes me no less qualified to offer commentary on this issue than anyone else. It is a purely economic problem that can be solved by making the farmers pay the true cost of their actions. I understand farmers need to make a living, and that is done by producing as much chicken as possible while minimizing their costs. Unfortunately, they minimize their costs through loopholes like these. Their waste goes unregulated and pollutes our water. They should have to pay the cost of properly handling their waste. Instead, watershed users are paying the costs in countless ways: unclean water, fish kills, habitat degradation, dead zones in the bay, and so on.
Legislation to close this loophole will mean farmers will have to pay more to clean up their waste. If this puts them in a tight spot economically, they will raise chicken prices. I will GLADLY pay more for chicken if it means chicken waste is not being dumped in my drinking water.
P.O. Box 544
Lexington, VA 24450