Home » NEWS » Agribusiness » Cal-Maine, DOJ announce settlement of water pollution issue

Cal-Maine, DOJ announce settlement of water pollution issue

CalMaineLogoEDWARDS — Mississippi-based egg producer Cal-Maine will bring a facility in Edwards into compliance with its state-issued water discharge permit.

The settlement was announced Monday by the company and the Department of Justice.

The Justice Department says in a news release that Cal-Maine will pay a $475,000 penalty to be split evenly between the U.S. and Mississippi.

Cal-Maine had been cited for Clean Water Act violations at the egg production facility in Edwards, which houses more than two million chickens.

The government says Cal-Maine discharged pollutants from the production area into a tributary of a nearby creek without approval and applied nitrogen-laden wastewater on fields during winter months when land application was prohibited and at rates that exceeded permit requirements.

Cal-Maine also committed hundreds of water sampling, record-keeping and reporting violations.

 

About Megan Wright

2 comments

  1. This was a major violation by a big corporation and it generated substantial fines, but the real story here is that the violations were pursued first by The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and not the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ). The state agency joined the settlement later but did not institute the enforcement. The EPA first investigated Cal-Maine’s permit compliance in other states, and the investigation led them to Mississippi. Mississippi’s DEQ, no doubt, had files where all the permit limit exceedances and other deficiencies were recorded, but it fell to someone else to put the story together. Why? Cal-Maine is a major U.S. corporation in the poultry business, responsible for many jobs, and state agencies here don’t push big employers too hard. Sometimes, in these situations, they don’t push at all.

    Link below to EPA website

    http://www2.epa.gov/enforcement/cal-maine-foods-inc-clean-water-act-settlement

  2. joneal4@gmail.com

    Andrew Whitehurst, of Gulf Restoration Network, tried to post this earlier. So I am trying again:

    “This was a major violation by a big corporation and it generated substantial fines, but the real story here is that the violations were pursued first by The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and not the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ). The state agency joined the settlement later but did not institute the enforcement. The EPA first investigated Cal-Maine’s permit compliance in other states, and the investigation led them to Mississippi. Mississippi’s DEQ, no doubt, had files where all the permit limit exceedances and other deficiencies were recorded, but it fell to someone else to put the story together. Why? Cal-Maine is a major U.S. corporation in the poultry business, responsible for many jobs, and state agencies here don’t push big employers too hard. Sometimes, in these situations, they don’t push at all.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*