Thursday, June 01, 2006

This year it's soy beans

Every so many years, the farmer who farms the lands surrounding our house switches from popcorn (his preferred crop) to soy bean for one season -- to give the land some recovery time.

This year his crop will be soy beans.

That's why this Kemplog item caught my eye.

I'm referring specifically to the new manure laws being considered in Iowa:
Iowa’s Environmental Protection Commission is considering banning the use of livestock manure as fertilizer on soybean fields. A proposal is currently being considered by state regulators to put the ban in place.

Commissioners and state officials supporting the regulation argue that manure is not needed for soybean growth and that it actually has the potential to cause harm to the environment. State officials says that research shows manure applied annually on soybean and corn crop rotations applies 61 percent more phosphorus than needed for the crops to grow.

Iowa Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRS) Nutrient Specialist Steve Brinkman explains that the Department of Natural Resources is concerned about excess manure running into the surface water.

Now, I'm pretty certain the new Jasper County CAFO that invaded our area last fall didn't have plans to sell/spread his manure on land surrounding our house... but it's good to know about this piece of news "just in case" there is a change of plans this fall -- if you know what I mean?

But the above quote leads me to wonder this: Just what does the Dept. of Natural Resources do on the Jasper-Pulaski Wildlife Reserve?

I mean... if Iowa's DNR has concerns regarding CAFOs, why does Jim Bergens, property manager for the J-P Reserve, indicate that he sees "no threat" from the 2500-head hog CAFO located adjacent to the reserve?

Sometimes you just gotta question whose really in charge here in Indiana, and what are their REAL priorities...

By the way -- so far so good -- we've only smelled the new hog factory twice. The wind has been blowing in the right direction, straight towards Jim's offices.

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