Chuck Zimmerman pointed me to an interesting activist site this morning. FactoryFarmMap.org is a site that maps state by state, county by county, what they consider to be the number of “top polluters;” i.e. large livestock operations. According to the site, the map is put together using a combination of USDA data and EPA criteria for CAFO’s:
The data used in this map is from the United States Department of Agriculture’s 2002 Census of Agriculture.
The USDA’s Census of Agriculture gathers a variety types of data. For this map, we used the categories of data in the Census that best match the Environmental Protection Agency’s definition for a confined animal feeding operation (CAFO), also known as a factory farm.
The EPA’s CAFO definition is complex, and the USDA’s Census does not measure data based on exactly the same criteria. However, the Census categories on which this map is based are measurements of large-scale animal facilities that best match the EPA criteria.
The site was produced by an activist group called Food and Water Watch, who’s professed intent is to:
– Abolish commercial livestock feeding operations
– Regulate manure and farm byproducts as hazardous waste under the Superfund laws
– Abolish the federal farm safety net
And the list goes on.