Pig farmers just inland of the North Carolina coast were rushing to drain cesspools before Hurricane Florence hit in order to accommodate the expected rain. In pig farming, open air “lagoons” are a common way to handle animal waste. The lagoons themselves are usually not problematic in terms of pollution. With the threat of immense rainfall, however, environmentalists and civilians alike are concerned about potential flooding.
Farmers are attempting to prepare for the rains Hurricane Florence will bring by draining lagoons. Many are concerned, though, that draining the lagoons will not be enough handle the quantity of rain. With the amount of rain that the hurricane will likely bring, the lagoon walls could easily erode and collapse. This would allow the manure to spread into open water systems. In 1999, Hurricane Floyd caused immense flooding on some of these pig farms, resulting in the spread of the manure to nearby rivers and causing environmental and health risks. Hopefully farmers were able to adequately prepare for Florence to avoid disastrous pollution.