> I do not doubt that this is the case. But if there are as many small farms as
> you indicate, then what is the CUMULATIVE impact of all these farms? When you
> add them up, how do they compare to major corporate polluters? This is not a
> challenge, Luke. Just a question. And maybe even a rhetorical one at that.
This is personal experience only... From what I have seen, read, and the
tiny amount of research I've done myself, the impact of the small stock
pond is negligible at best. Even when considered as cumulative in
effect. There are many reasons for this:
1. The relative size of the ponds. Generally less than 1/4 acre.
2. The infrequency with which they "overflow". Perhaps in a wet year that
frequency increases, but from personal observations I've made, these
types of ponds rarely overflow more than once or twice a year. (the
vast majority are filled with runnoff rain water, are shallow, and
usually NEED water and don't shed it.
3. The relatively low amount of "pollution" they can contain due to their
small size. Most only water a few cattle...perhaps under 50 head...
but not all. Generally, there are generous growths of cattail and
other plants sucking up excess nutrients. But again, not always...
4. A large portion also have "green" around them to hold in soil, soak up
wastes and act as a buffer. But again, not all do.
I believe if the truly big polluters were brought under control, these
amounts would be so negligble as to be a non issue. However, larger
bodies of water can be a problem, and I don't opposse the water
regulations, on the contrary, I support the idea, but I want to see the
"gray areas" addressed and cleared up before it is enacted. That way, the
ones who are doing the real polluting are held accountable and not the
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