The Raccoon River, drinking source for over 500,000 residents of Des Moines, Iowa, is being heavily polluted by the industrial agriculture industry, and we need to stop it.

More than 750 factory farms exist within the Raccoon River watershed, which create billions of gallons of manure waste each year. This waste is used on acre after acre of Iowa’s cropland where it runs off into waterways, exacerbating the water quality, fueling the growth of toxic algal blooms, and making the river unsafe for people to drink.The river has been polluted to such an extent that Des Moines Water Works, Iowa’s largest water utility, must rely on one of the world’s largest nitrate removal systems in order to provide clean drinking water to over half a million people in the capital city.

For too long, Iowans’ right to clean water has been ignored in favor of allowing industrial agricultural interests to continue growing their profits. Iowans’ rights, health, and well-being must come before the interests of multi-billion dollar corporate agribusiness interests. We cannot continue to sacrifice our quality of life so a few industry fat cats can profit.

If you don’t think it can happen to our water here, think again. Pigs can’t drink polluted water either, so CAFOs are spreading out in search of clean water.