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Letter to the editor: A sad day for Green County
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From Harry Pulliam

New Glarus

Thursday, April 6 was a sad day for Green County. That morning the Green County Board Land and Water Conservation Committee (Oscar Olson, Russ Torkelson, Kristi Leonard, Kenneth Hodgson and Jeff Williams) voted unanimously to allow Nebraska-based Todd Tuls to build a 5,800-cow industrial dairy operation in the Town of Sylvester. Once established, the operation will annually produce over 68 million gallons of liquid manure (enough to fill 103 Olympic-sized swimming pools) and 16,500 tons of solid waste.

The NRCS (USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service) and Green County Conservationist Todd Jenson have both expressed serious concerns over the design and placement of the manure storage facility. (It is to be sited in a wet, low-lying area with springs and a creek nearby.) Despite these concerns, however, the committee members appeared compelled to grant the permit. They chose to accept verbal assurances from Tuls and his lawyer that the company would abide by a long list of conditions set forth by Mr. Jenson.

This is problematic. Why? Because Wisconsin DNR found out (from an anonymous tip) just recently that in December of last year, there was a massive spill at another Tuls operation, Emerald Sky Dairy in St. Croix County. Because Tuls failed to report that spill, one questions what the company will do if there is a similar disaster at the Sylvester location. Green County families deserve better.