Letter to the Editor: Let the Healing Begin

We start another trip around our sun, another year begins. I’m hoping this one will be more fun than the last one. The citizens have taken action into their own hands and requested help from the U.S. EPA. Now our DNR is having meetings across the county with experts, all looking for the answers. I’ve been to many of these meetings and have learned much about Kewaunee County and our problems, but like my father said, “You learn more by listening than talking!”

I have several ideas that will start the healing process today if only action would be taken. None of these will cost the people, the county, the state one cent. Not one!

  1. No spreading of liquid manure on land with less than 20 feet of soil. Dry manure could only be applied at a rate not to exceed five tons per acre.
  2. Liquid manure can be applied on soil with 20′ to 50′ at a rate of 3,000 gallons per acre maximum. That’s about 13 tons per acre.
  3. Land with more than 50 feet of soil would be limited to spreading no more than 6,000 gallons per acre.
  4. Signed land contracts must be used to prove how much land is under contract and new third party soil testing must be done; we have to know what shape the land is in before spreading begins.
  5. Install well monitoring equipment on all farms with more than 500 cows.
  6. Increase all setbacks to minimum of 200 feet.
  7. Map out all drain tiles and outlets.

These issues of mine have been brought up at the DNR meetings, but you most likely will not see any of them when the final report is published. Why not? Our county board chairman has been talking about systems costing. Millions and millions of dollars. Why not do it for free? If and when the technologies become available, then we would of course encourage that, but until then, let’s try these because what we have been doing for the last seven to 10 years is not working!


Dick Swanson

Algoma, Wis.

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