The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (“ADEQ”) announced that an evaluation will be undertaken of the integrity of the storage ponds of the C & H Hog Farms, Inc.

C & H is a Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation located in Mount Judea, Arkansas. This location places it in the Buffalo River Watershed.

ADEQ states it has selected Harbor Environmental and Safety as independent experts to conduct the evaluation.

ADEQ states that the evaluation is being “advanced to provide additional information to the agency and community”. It quotes Director Becky Keogh as stating:

The ADEQ Integrity Evaluation will be conducted in an open and transparent manner and is part of our statutory authority to conduct investigations and studies as needed to gather data and information in the administration or enforcement of pollution laws.

The C & H facility operates pursuant to National Pollution Discharge Elimination System General Permit No. ARG 590000.

ADEQ states that the University of Arkansas Big Creek Research and Extension Team (“BCRET”)previously conducted an Electrical Resistivity Imaging study around the C & H ponds and has undertaken sampling to detect potential leakage. The agency notes that the primary purpose of its study is to supplement the information generated by the BCRET work.

The ADEQ announcement also includes a timeline of events related to this research, which is linked here. Also linked here is ADEQ’s C & H Project Plan and a past meeting presentation to the Buffalo River Coalition.