Letter to the Editor: CAFOs in Kewaunee and Door Counties, By the Numbers

In reaction to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources holding a public hearing on Nov. 28, 2017, regarding wastewater treatment permit renewals for four Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations, two of which are seeking expansion (expanding by 4,289 total “animal units”) in Kewaunee County, I look at some of the numbers on CAFOs.


CAFOs in Door County.


CAFOs in Kewaunee County.


State records show that half of Kewaunee County’s CAFOs have been cited 15 times for manure spills by the Wisconsin DNR since April 2014.


Percentage of tested wells in Kewaunee County polluted with fecal matter and/or bacteria, viruses, and nitrates in 2015. In some areas of Kewaunee County, the percentage has been found to be as high as 60 percent of the tested wells.


CAFOS in the northeast Wisconsin DNR Region.


CAFOs in the state of Wisconsin.


Gallons of urine and feces a typical dairy cow generates per year. Additional gallons of water used to flush this waste into manure lagoons is variable and unknown.


The estimated number of animal units in Kewaunee County is more than 100,000.


In September 2014, the Wisconsin DNR reported about 640,000 gallons of manure spilled from a non-CAFO farm in Door County. The accident was believed to be the largest manure spill in Wisconsin since 2005.


Gallons of animal waste generated per year in Kewaunee County.


Number of CAFO expansion applications in Kewaunee and Door Counties denied by the Wisconsin DNR. No one recalls the Wisconsin DNR ever denying a CAFO expansion application in Kewaunee and Door counties.

Permitting an additional 4,289 animal units allows for another nearly 30 million gallons of animal waste to be spread over the vulnerable karst typography of northeast Wisconsin. It’s our water. Help us protect it.

Mike Bahrke, Door County Environmental Council Member

Ellison Bay, Wis.

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