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Groups ask Oregon Legislature for mega-dairy moratorium

The groups say poor state oversight has allowed large dairies to pollute the state's air and water, and forced family-scale dairies out of business.

Posted: Dec 11, 2018 2:48 PM
Updated: Dec 11, 2018 2:48 PM

SALEM, Ore. (AP) -- A dozen state and national health and environment groups are calling on Oregon leaders and legislators to impose a moratorium on new or expanded mega-dairies.

The Statesman Journal reports the groups say poor state oversight has allowed large dairies to pollute the state's air and water, and forced family-scale dairies out of business.

The groups cite the Lost Valley Farm, permitted to confine 30,000 cows, as an example. Since it was approved in April 2017, the dairy, near Boardman, has been cited for more than 200 environmental violations, and fined nearly $200,000.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture regulates air and water pollution from dairies. It has been trying to shut the dairy down for almost a year, through a civil lawsuit and by moving to revoke the dairy's wastewater permit, but has been unsuccessful.

State officials didn't immediately coment on the groups' letter.

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