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News 910 views last update:Nov 13, 2006

Manitoba suspends pig industry expansion

The Canadian province of Manitoba has temporarily halted the expansion of the province's booming pig industry during an independent environmental review of new water laws.

In addition, it has announced new restrictions on the use of commercial and residential fertilisers.
 
The moves are an attempt to stop harmful substances such as phosphorous, found in manure and fertilisers, from leaching into Lake Winnipeg and other bodies of water that are facing growing pollution problems.
 

Keeping phosphorous away

''We want to keep phosphorous away from the edges of rivers and away from the edges of lakes,'' conservation minister Stan Struthers said.
 
The province will not approve any new or expanded pig barns until the clean environment commission completes a review of the impacts of the pig industry. This process might take more than a year and could result in new restrictions for producers.
 
Starting in 2009, homeowners, farmers and municipalities will not be allowed to spread fertilisers near lakes or rivers.
 

Environmentalist concerns

Environmentalists who have raised concerns about the growing volume of pig manure in Manitoba, a province where the animals outnumber people almost eight-to-one, welcomed the changes.
 
The government said it will give financial help to farmers most affected by the changes.
 

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