Michigan Farm Bureau v. Michigan Dept. of Environmental Quality – State Court of Appeals

March 29, 2011 – Michigan Farm Bureau, Michigan Milk Producers Association, Michigan Allied Poultry Industry, and others filed an appeal challenging the authority of the DEQ to require CAFOs to seek and obtain permits or prove they have no potential to discharge. The Newaygo Circuit Court upheld the right of the DEQ to act accordingly.

Michigan Judge Upholds Factory Farm Pollution Rules

January 20, 2009 – Congratulations to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality for an important court victory that assures that factory farms will still be treated the same as other potentially polluting industries. After the Michigan Farm Bureau and other large agribusiness groups challenged whether the state DEQ could require all CAFOs to obtain pollution discharge permits, a Newaygo County Circuit Court judge sided with the DEQ, upholding state regulations designed to prevent factory farms from polluting surface waters.
Read the full decision on the Michigan Sierra Club’s website.

Information and Resources

Less = More Campaign

A campaign spear-headed by the Michigan Chapter of the Sierra Club to draw attention to the amount of tax-payer resources that go to polluting factory farms.

Living a Nightmare: Animal Factories in Michigan

Produced by the Michigan Chapter of the Sierra Club, this video provides a detailed account of the devastating impacts of factory farms on local communities. The video includes interviews with longtime Michigan residents whose health, environment, and quality of life were dramatically impaired by the construction of neighboring factory farms. Watch the video online on Google Video; visit the Michigan Chapter of the Sierra Club for more information.

Save Our Rural Communities – No CAFOs

Addressing local CAFO issues and promoting sustainable alternatives. Photos of pollution, information about local growers, farm markets, etc.

Sierra Citizen Lobbyist Primer – Factory Farms

The Michigan DEQ is currently attempting to compile a comprehensive list by visiting all suspected CAFOs, a process that could take a year and a half longer to complete. In the meantime, The Sierra Club urges the legislature to enact laws that will limit the adverse impacts of CAFOs on Michigan’s environment and human health. (Sierra Club, February, 2005)

Confirmed Violations/Discharges to Surface Water from Confined Animal Feed Operations (CAFOs)

Hudson, MI area, 2000-2002. All of the 10 Hudson area dairy CAFOs have violated Michigan’s Natural Resources & Environmental Protection Act since February 2000. Several CAFOs have multiple violations. Michigan has levied no fines or penalties for any of these violations. Compiled by the Environmentally Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan. For updated information about CAFO violations, visit: http://www.nocafos.org/news.htm.

Great Lakes Information Network

Environmental information about the Great Lakes region, including agencies and organizations, air quality, biodiversity, pollution, sustainable development, areas of concern, water, endangered species and energy.

Livestock Factories

The Public Trust Alliance, part of the Michigan Land Use Institute, works with rural families and communities around Michigan to develop a more trustworthy complaint response system to livestock factories, a Right to Farm Act that no longer shields industrial operations from legitimate nuisance suits, and continued local zoning powers over this new and imposing scale of agriculture operation.

State Information

Provides state legislative information along with documents related to state and local government. (Washburn University School of Law)

US Farms – State Fact Sheets

Links for each state, with current information about farm size, financial status, rural employment, land use, and more. (USDA)

Water Quality in the Lake Erie-Lake Saint Clair Drainages Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, New York and Pennsylvania, 1996-98

Water quality assessment reports from the US Geological Survey.

State and Local Government


Environmentally Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan (ECCSCM)

Family Farms for Responsible Agriculture developed this website to provide information about the pollution and the damage CAFOs have caused in the town and watersheds of Hudson, Michigan, and to promote sustainable alternatives.

Farms Without Harm

Farms Without Harm is a network of groups and individuals that support safe, sustainable farming in Michigan. It does so through education of the public about the diverse issues surrounding industrial agriculture and the alternatives to factory farming that exist in Michigan. This public education takes the form of speakers, panels, workshops, film screenings and other public events, as well as presentations to groups such as editorial boards, farmers, and legislators.


Administrative code R 323.2102-323.2192

Wastewater discharge permits (NPDES)

Brady Township odor ordinance

(link is to federal court case which upheld the ordinance)