ACTION: Tell Gov Cooper to Protect Communities from Hog Waste Odors

May 2, 2017

URGENT: Protect our vulnerable communities from hog waste odors!

Location of hog farms in North Carolina by census block group
Location of hog farms in North Carolina by census block group.

Ask Governor Cooper to veto H467, Agriculture and Forestry Nuisance Remedies by May 6!

If a business moved into your neighborhood and subsequently emitted odors so noxious that you no longer could spend time in your backyard or on your front porch on hot summer days, you would want to have the right to demand that the business control those emissions, wouldn’t you?

House Bill 467, Agriculture and Forestry Nuisance Remedies, which the NC legislature has sent to Governor Cooper, removes the rights of people living near massive hog farms, called Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs), to sue those businesses for health damages from excessive odors. These odors and emissions can force people to reduce their activities and impair mental health and cause neuropsychiatric abnormalities. The communities located near CAFOs in North Carolina are predominantly low-income minority communities whose members already are at risk for medical exacerbations due to other health and social disparities.

Clean Air Carolina and Medical Advocates for Healthy Air oppose this bill. We believe that people should have the right to protect their property and their health from hazardous conditions resulting from the activities of neighboring businesses. Join us in asking Governor Cooper to veto this toxic bill. 

Ask Governor Cooper to Veto H467 – CALL 919-814-2000

More Information:

House Bill 467, Agriculture and Forestry Nuisance Remedies, removes the rights of people living near massive hog farms, called Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs), to sue those businesses for damages from excessive odors.

CAFO odors can cause severe lifestyle changes for individuals in the surrounding communities and can alter many daily activities. When odors are severe, people may choose to stay inside and keep their windows closed, even in high temperatures when there is no air conditioning. Mental health deterioration and an increased sensitization to smells can also result from living in close proximity to odors from CAFOs. These odors and emissions can cause negative mood states, such as tension, depression, or anger, and possibly neuropsychiatric abnormalities, such as impaired balance or memory. People who live close to factory farms can develop CAFO-related post traumatic stress disorder, including anxiety about declining quality of life.

The communities located near CAFOs in North Carolina are predominantly low-income minority communities whose members already are at risk for medical exacerbations due to other health and social disparities. Conversely, the CAFOs in North Carolina are predominantly owned by powerful multinational corporations. This bill protects an industry that deliberately selects locations near disadvantaged communities, perpetuating a system of inequality.

Please contact Governor Cooper at 919-814-2000 or by filling out the contact form at: https://governor.nc.gov/. Using the sample message below, be sure to personalize it by specifying your profession and town or county, which are the items in red in the sample message.

We’re keeping tallies! After contacting the governor, please let us know you took action by sending an email to [email protected]. Thank you!

Sample message for Governor Cooper:

My name is Your Name. I am a (profession, parent, etc.) in (town or county). I urge you to veto House Bill 467, Agriculture and Forestry Nuisance Remedies. Research shows that odors and emissions from CAFOs can have adverse health impacts, such as forcing people to stay indoors on hot days when they may not have air conditioning, causing mental health problems like depression and anger, and reducing the quality of life. People should have the right to sue a business that harms their health. I urge you to veto H467 and protect the right of North Carolinians to advocate for our health and the health of our children.

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