On Friday, January 23, 2015 10:46 AM, Bobby King (LSP) <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
LSP Action Alert
Stand Up for Environmental Review & Citizen Input on Jan. 29
Plan to Attend Senate Environment Policy Committee Hearing Thurs., Jan. 29, at Noon, on the Importance of Environmental Review & Citizen Input
A recent decision by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Citizens' Board to order a much needed in-depth environmental review of an 8,850 cow mega-dairy has corporate ag interests out to gut environmental review and citizen input. (More details below.) Rather than let corporate interests set the agenda, Senator John Marty, Chair of the Senate Environment Policy Committee, is holding a hearing on the POSITIVE impacts of environmental review and citizen input in that process. The fact is that Minnesota is a better place to live because of policies that allow citizens to have a voice in decisions that will impact their community and that assess how potential environmental harm can be avoided BEFORE a project is permitted.
LSP dairy farmer-member James Kanne of Renville County will be testifying on why family farms and rural Minnesota are better off when we require large-scale factory farms to fully disclose the potential harm to the community through environmental review.
Take Action to support strengthening environmental review in Minnesota and citizen input in the process.
1. Attend the Senate Environment Policy hearing Jan. 29, from noon to 1:30 p.m., in Room 107 of the State Capitol.
If you plan to attend, let Bobby King at LSP know at email@example.com or 612-722-6377. If you need a ride, we have a car coming up from southeast Minnesota and are arranging for carpooling in other parts of the state. If you do plan to attend, remember that there is extensive construction going on at the State Capitol and give yourself extra time to find parking. Parking information is here.
Can’t attend but want to watch? You can watch the hearing online here.
2. Contact members of the Senate Environment Policy Committee and let them know you think environmental review and citizen input make Minnesota strong and a great place to live and do business.
Suggested message: “As a member of the Senate Environment Policy Committee, you will be hearing about environmental review and citizen participation in the process at your Jan. 29 meeting. Minnesotans know that economic development does not have to come at the expense of our environment and that citizen input into major developments that will impact their community for decades to come is a good thing. This is what environmental review does. It assesses what the potential harm is up-front before permitting begins. This makes sense and I strongly support policies like these. Corporate ag interests want environmental review weakened because the MPCA Citizens’ Board made the right decision to order an Environmental Impact Statement on a proposed 8,000 cow mega-dairy. It would be wrong to weaken this bedrock environmental protection for corporate special interests.”
- Sen. Julie Rosen (R-Vernon Center) at 651-296-5713 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sen. Matt Schmit (DFL-Red Wing) at 651-296-4264 or email@example.com
- Sen. John Hoffman (DFL-Champlin) at 651-296-4154 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sen. Lyle Koenen (DFL-Clara City) at 651-296-5094 or email@example.com
- Sen. Bill Weber (R-Luverne) at 651-296-5650 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sen. David Osmek (R-Mound) at 651-296-1282 or email@example.com
- Sen. Michelle Benson (R-Ham Lake) at 651-296-3219 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sen. David Brown (R-Becker) at 651-296-8075 or email@example.com
- Sen. Chris Eaton (DFL-Brooklyn Center) at 651-296-8869 or Use Mail Form
- Sen. Foung Hawj (DFL-St. Paul) at 651-296-5285 or Use Mail Form
- Sen. Bev Scalze (DFL-Little Canada) at 651-296-5537 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sen. D. Scott Dibble (DFL-Minneapolis) at 651-296-4191 or Use Mail Form
- Sen. Katie Sieben (DFL-Newport) at 651-297-8060 or Use Mail Form
- Sen. John Marty (DFL-Roseville) at 651-296-5645 or Use Mail Form
• The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Citizens’ Board ordered an Environmental Impact Statement on an 8,850 cow mega-dairy in Stevens County. Each year this operation would have used over 100 million gallons of water and generated over 75 million gallons of liquid manure. Neighbors wanted a complete assessment of the impacts to their community before it was permitted. This proposal was massive and would have been the largest dairy in Minnesota where 92 percent of all dairy farms are under 200 cows. The MPCA Citizens’ Board listened and made the appropriate decision to order an in-depth environmental review. The response from corporate ag interests has been to push for weakening environmental review, including the extreme proposal of eliminating the MPCA Citizens’ Board. More details are in the LSP blog: LSP Applauds MPCA Citizens’ Board Ordering of EIS on Massive Dairy Factory Farm.
• How many and how large are dairy farms in Minnesota? There are 3,422 dairy farms in Minnesota. The average dairy herd size is 105 cows. The median herd size is 60. Ninety-two percent of all dairy farmers are 200 cows or under. Only 30 dairy farms (less than 1 percent) are over 1,000 cows.
• Read the commentary from Rep. David Bly which is currently running throughout rural Minnesota: Family farmers are 'real ag' and key to rural Minnesota’s future
• Read this recent LSP action alert on the issue: Local Control & Environmental Review of Factory Farms Under Attack Even Before the MN Legislative Session Begins