The St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin‘s tribal council recently passed a resolution in opposition to the proposed Cumberland LLC hog facility in Burnett County.
The tribe says the concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) “poses a serious threat to fresh water supplies and the surrounding environment which will have long lasting effects on the Tribal Membership and the community that lives in Burnett County and the surrounding areas.”
Cumberland has proposed a 26,000-hog facility in the town of Trade Lake. It would produce about 9 million gallons of manure and other waste per year, which would be spread on nearby farm fields as fertilizer.
The resolution also states the tribe’s opposition to any other proposals that threatens water or ecosystems in the area.
According to the resolution, the tribe recognizes that “fresh water is a finite resource and that societal demands to pollute essential fresh water supplies represents an existential threat to culture and lifestyle and a direct threat to lakes, rivers, wetlands, and ground water which play a vital role in both the environment and people living in the surrounding areas.”
The five-member elected tribal council passed the resolution unanimously on September 8. It was distributed to all members of the Burnett County board, as well as the head of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
There are about 1,000 enrolled members of the tribe, most of whom live on about 5,000 acres of tribal land in northwest Wisconsin. They also have legal rights to hunting and fishing in perpetuity across the region as part of the 1837 treaty.