Governor Breaks Promise to Environmental Community by Withdrawing Phosphorous Management Program
Statement by Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter
Annapolis, MD — “Food & Water Watch was disappointed, but not surprised, to learn that Governor Martin O’Malley—a longtime friend to the big poultry companies on Maryland’s Eastern Shore—has broken his promise to the environmental community to help curb pollution in the Chesapeake Bay. Last Friday, the Maryland State Department of Agriculture withdrew regulations that would have addressed the poultry industry’s 1.5 billion annual pounds of manure runoff from farms into local waterways.
“Last month, the O’Malley Administration pledged to implement the Phosphorus Management Tool (PMT), a critical chicken manure application tool that would help hold the poultry industry accountable for excess phosphorous runoff from chicken manure into the Chesapeake Bay. While the Administration promised to implement the program completely by January 2015, the decision to withdraw PMT will surely hurt any legitimate efforts to address pollution in the Bay.
“Governor Martin O’Malley has once again demonstrated that he is unwilling to compromise his friendship with Jim Perdue and the rest of the poultry industry in order to move forward with an effective plan to clean up the excess nutrients that have created dead zones in the Bay in recent years.
“As recently as three years ago, O’Malley told Jim Perdue that he would never hold the industry accountable for its contribution to excessive nutrient pollution in the Chesapeake Bay despite the fact that large chicken integrators continue to be the largest contributors of pollution there. It looks like that is the only promise he is willing to keep regarding the health of the regions most important watershed.”
For more on this story, read our blog, O’Malley’s Broken Promises for a Dying Bay: http://fwwat.ch/1ioExKk
Contact: Rich Bindell, 202-683-2457, [email protected]