Passage of Bill 17 Creates Concern

CANADA - Manitoba hog producers and their supporters are expressing disappointment following the passage of a controversial bill that will halt swine industry development in most of eastern Manitoba, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 25 September 2008
clock icon 3 minute read

Bill 17, the Environment Amendment Act passed third reading yesterday (24 September) in the Manitoba legislature.

The bill establishes regional moratoriums on hag barn expansion in Southeastern Manitoba, the Red River Valley Special Management Area, which includes the Capital Region and the Interlake.

Although the Manitoba Liberals and the Manitoba Conservative both voted against the bill it passed by a margin of 36 for and 19 against.

Manitoba Conservative agriculture critic Ralph Eichler says this sends a very clear message that the NDP government is anti-farm and anti-rural Manitoba.

Ralph Eichler - Manitoba Conservatives

We have a two billion dollar industry.

Credit Union Central had also sent a letter just in the last month asking the government to have a look at this particular piece of legislation because of the impact it's going to have, not only on the hog industry but on their sector as well.

When we look at the electricians, the lumber yards, the education system, the list goes on and on.

With a two billion dollar industry that's significant and, when ever you start tampering, we're going to see results that have a ripple effect.

No, we won't see it tomorrow but in a year, two years, three years, four years down the road, it's going to have a detrimental effect unfortunately.

Mr Eichler insists we all want clean water but how to achieve that is the question so we need to be looking to the science and we need to be paying attention to the experts, the scientists who have studied the environmental impact of agricultural production and the science community has made it clear that a moratorium is unnecessary.

He says producers have shown they're prepared to take out their check books and take necessary steps to ensure the environment is protected.

Further Reading

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