After shaking her pom-poms for the “Jackrabbit Family Farm” piglet factory near Mount Vernon in 2013, Congresswoman Kristi Noem has had nothing to say about the overpowering stench emanating from the 5000-sow facility and making life miserable for its neighbors. Davison County residents went to the courthouse yesterday to air their continuing grievances against the Pipestone Systems facility. Pipestone Systems says it’s doing what it can:
“The microbes in the pit take years to get fully activated, and then the odor will be reduced,” said Sean Simpson, general counsel for Pipestone System….
Dr. Barry Kerkaert, veterinarian for Jackrabbit Farms, said the company is not satisfied with the odor issue and a major remedy to the situation is to get the enzymes in the manure pits working better to eliminate the odor [Anna Jauhola, “Neighbors Still Unhappy About Smell at Jackrabbit Farms,” Mitchell Daily Republic, 2015.04.09].
Hmmm… if there’s stuff for the neighbors to smell, there must be stuff for the microbes to eat. What are you lazy microbes waiting for? Activate!
While we wait for the microbes to get to work, neighbors lose their quality of life, with no compensation, and with Pipestone Systems saying it costs too much to reduce the smell further:
Neighbors Dave Truesdell and Lyle Reimnitz said both their families are often overwhelmed by the smell. They said they cannot open their windows at night and the smell penetrates their homes, particularly with a south wind.
Theresa Mueller, another neighbor, said the odor is particularly bad at night and has caused severe respiratory issues for her and her daughter.
Truesdell asked why Pipestone and Jackrabbit haven’t put in biofilters that work to decrease the odor. Simpson countered, saying the company installed biofilters, just not the ones the neighbors requested “because it’s cost prohibitive” [Jauhola, 2015.04.09].
It’s also cost-prohibitive to go sleep in town every night the wind blows from the south, or to eat the loss on selling a house in a CAFO-stink zone. But Congresswoman Noem has no time to champion the South Dakotans suffering those losses. Business comes first. Let’s build more CAFOs, right, Rep. Mickelson?