A cattle operation in central Minnesota was fined $30,000 by state officials for allowing manure runoff containing E. coli and other contaminants to pollute tributaries of the Crow Wing River, which is an “impaired water.”
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) had also fined Crow Wing Feeders of Albany, Minn., in 2010 for other violations relating to its cattle business.
In the latest instance, the agency said Wednesday, Crow Wing Feeders allowed cattle access to Seven Mile Creek, failed to operate and maintain a manure-storage basin according to MPCA-approved requirements and housed cattle on unpermitted areas of land, which caused manure discharges to a nearby stream.
Other violations near Pillager, Minn., included stockpiling manure within the 50-foot setback from a roadside ditch and improper land application of manure, which resulted in excess nitrogen and phosphorus being applied.
Along with the fine, Crow Wing Feeders also agreed to take corrective actions to prevent further violations.
Seven Mile Creek and the nearby stream both drain into the Crow Wing River, which is on the MPCA’s list of “impaired waters.” E. coli, nitrogen and phosphorus “can negatively impact water quality and harm aquatic life,” the MPCA said in a statement announcing the action.
In the earlier case, Crow Wing Feeders agreed to pay $15,000 and take corrective actions for feedlot violations at its cattle operation in Cass County. MPCA inspections revealed construction and expansion without proper permits and improper manure discharges.
Telephone calls to Crow Wing Feeders on Wednesday seeking comment were not answered.