A bill under debate in the Missouri Senate to stop counties from regulating concentrated animal feeding operations should be treated as the swill it is.
Senate Bill 391 would give the state exclusive authority over CAFOs. Currently, county rules give residents protection that the state will not. In Missouri, county health and zoning ordinances seem to be the last bastion against expanding factory farms pushing into rural areas regardless of the intensive agriculture sites impact on residents and the environment.
The massive concentrations of waste products at CAFOs create serious concerns and have caused extensive damage when storms, floods and other problems have triggered leaks or ruptures of containment lagoons.