NC Legislature Lets Big Pork Pollute with Impunity

The North Carolina General Assembly gave final approval to a bill that restricts nuisance lawsuits against factory farms and other agricultural operations. The law is a reaction to several lawsuits won by plaintiffs who have been negatively affected by the smell and environmental impact of nearby intensive hog farming operations. (See AWI Quarterly, summer 2018.) Initially, the law was vetoed by Gov. Roy Cooper, who stated that the new law put agriculture over property rights. However, the general assembly voted to override the veto just two days later. Local lawmakers paint the law as a victory for local farmers, but in reality the act places profits of large corporations that treat animals and the environment poorly before the interests of North Carolina citizens who deserve to have access to clean air and water and to not have their homes invaded by the stench and pollution of these large-scale operations.

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