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Local Farmer and Conservation Advocates React to Trump Review of Clean Water Rule

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NEOSHO, MISSOURI -

President Trump signs more executive orders including one ordering a review of an Obama era rule designed to protect small streams and wetlands from development and pollution.
           The president and Senator Roy Blunt  say the Obama rule is one of the worst examples of federal regulation truly run amok and the Missouri farm bureau agrees.
Mike Wilson has seventy dairy cows and about seventy heifers. For him protecting area streams means recycling much of his animal
s waste.
Wilson said, "We do have like a small grass area for the run across and it filters through that. Of course and that
s something, waste you have to pile and dry it, spread it on the fields when the weather allows you."
He says farmers are conservationist. He does no tilling and watches the forecast so as not to fertilize before rain.
"We fertilize our fields anything that runs off is money out of our pockets. 
We're not against (regulating) that. We're just against over regulations."

Regulations the Audubon Society supports.
 The education coordinator at the Wildcat Glades Conservation and Audubon Center, Chris Pistole said, "The EPA is essential to having healthy ecosystems protecting human health."

Pistole coordinates the stream team that monitors Shoal creek. Where he says Joplin gets eighty-five percent of its drinking water. He says the rules redefined the watershed, meaning which bodies of water are protected by the Clean Water Act.
"Under our view that makes complete sense because even the small tributaries all run together into those larger bodies of water. They
re all part of that watershed so we feel like it was a good move. "

The Neosho fish hatchery says its already changed its practices to protect streams. Manager Roderick May said, "Instead of treating with a chemical, we'll treat with plain old salt."
The fish hatchery ponds are fed by four area streams and it owns property around them to protect  from dangerous development.  The manager here says concern about streams is more pronounced because of the topography of area land.

May explained, "Our groundwater travels really fast here.  It can move in a matter of days, where it could take years to move that far someplace else. And it
s simply because we have all the caves, losing streams and sinkholes and thats not slowing that water down."  

Wilson says lagoons and new technology  could help farmers meet mandates but can cost up to one hundred thousand dollars. Something small farmers can
t afford.

Pistole says the Audubon Society will work with either political party and hopes to come up with science based common sense solutions.
           He says farmers can seek help from cost sharing programs from Department of Conservation and the EPA.

 

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