Proposed pollution limitations are not enough
To the editor: Many people (myself included) look at the acronym DEQ and think, “Department of Environmental Quality.” Hmm… so it is their job to help ensure and maintain the quality of our environment for the common good while propelling commerce, right? If the DEQ approved a permit, it’s got to be okay. Right? Think again.
Let’s not forget the DEQ’s support of Merit Energy Company’s desire to discharge millions of gallons of treated oil field groundwater into the AuSable’s headwaters. (Didn’t happen.)
The moneyed, long strong-arm of commerce seems to trump the common good in Michigan the majority of the time. The message of Governor Snyder’s administration has become abundantly clear. Save money (the DEQ’s debacle in Flint Water crisis) and propel big business models despite the cost to the environment and the common man (permission to pollute). Big agriculture has a stake in Grayling, the expansion of fish farming in Michigan.
In his bid to make profit, Mr. Vogler of Henrietta (Fish) Farms requested and was granted from Michigan’s DEQ permission to pollute. Within the permit, Mr. Vogler claims his permission to pollute is necessary – to create two full-time and two part-time positions, maintain tourism at the hatchery, prevent the abandonment and preserve improvements that were made, and to expose youth to fishing. And yes, while effluent limitations have been set, these limitations are not nearly enough to stop what will become over time a HUGE loss to our community, our clean water.