Site Description-DP

Showered by literal shit: Duplin County’s struggle against the hog industry

Author Biography:

My name is Devan Patel, a student at New Jersey Institute of Technology studying Computer Science. My motivation for taking this course in environmental justice comes primarily from the desire to learn more. I was initially introduced to the topic by my friend, who was kind enough to shed light on human rights and animal cruelty issues. She provided various examples, one of which was brought to life in What the Health, a documentary that discusses the negative consequences of meat eating and meat production. The filmmaker of the documentary, Kip Anderson, interviews Rene Miller, who lost several family members to diseases that disproportionately affect the African American community in Duplin County, N.C. My research focuses on the struggles faced by residents of Duplin County, N.C. as a consequence of the practices of the hog industry and argues that the industry continues its behavior knowingly.

Project Site Description:

North Carolina is a top producer of turkeys, chicken, and hogs in the United States. Hog farmers in North Carolina store hog waste in lagoons and then spray the liquified waste onto open fields. The practices that the hog industry practices are not sufficient to protect the environment both at the sites and away from them since waste and toxins drift via elements. My research focuses on how the consequences of the industry disproportionally affect minorities. In addition to that, it attempts to find out what policies, economic incentives and practices helped the hog industry prosper in Duplin County, North Carolina in order to help my reader understand whether minorities were neglected and left out of the decision making process. Understanding the answer to this question will help formulate a more comprehensive understanding of what environmental injustice is and reinforce the key points to identifying environmental injustice by analyzing yet another site that is surrounded by minority. The argument concludes that those who purchase these products and know about these inequalities are also practicing environmental injustice and racism.

Keywords: Race, Class, African America, Water, Factories