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Last minute news, Drilling reports, 3 grandmothers take a stand for the river, Algae blooms clog the Buffalo, IBA status for the BNR, "Still A River" free concerts.
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LAST MINUTE NEWSLETTER ADDITIONS (in brown text)
Today
Gov. Hutchinson to Hold News Conference Friday to Make Special Buffalo River Announcement
10 AM Friday, September 30, at the Capital Building
Springdale Public Hearing on Regulation 6
04 Oct 2016 6:00 PM 
Jones Center for Families,
922 E. Emma Ave.,
Springdale, AR 72764

Although the proposed changes to Reg 6 are many, complex and not all related to the Buffalo River, the Buffalo River Watershed Alliance will be submitting comments on some areas of concern.
To read BRWA comments click here.
To read the ADEQ document click here.
Public attendance demonstrates continued interest and concern.
Ozark Folklife Festival, Tyler Bend
October 1 @ 10:00 am - 8:00 pm
A change of pace and a bit of fun
For details click here
The drilling to investigate the suspicious plume and fracture under the C&H sewage ponds began Wednesday, September 21, and ended on Friday, September 23.  Skimpy daily reports are posted on the ADEQ website.
We now await lab results. The final report will apparently not be available until January, 2017. Read notes from the Friday APC&E Commission below.
Three Grandmothers Join Forces to Appeal ADEQ Permit Approved for EC Farms
Three Arkansas women banded together to appeal a recent decision that would allow EC Farms to spray hog waste from C&H Hog Farms, Inc., onto additional karst terrain within the Buffalo National River watershed.

To learn more about the Three Grandmothers and their effort go to the BRWA website and click on the link under Events.  Click below the poster that come up to read the text portion.  Well worth the read.
The Buffalo National River withdrew a similar appeal on the advice of counsel.  Federal/State matters can involve issues of sovereign immunity and other complexities.  The Park reports they are still engaged and are working with EPA and ADEQ.
Paddlers have reported high concentrations of algae in sections of the Buffalo River.  Studies are underway to determine the cause.  While conclusions can't yet be reached, large algal blooms can be stimulated by nutrients/wastes such as nitrates and phosphates coupled with  warm temperatures. Algae grows rapidly under such conditions and, as algal blooms die, dissolved oxygen levels rapidly decline and harmful chemicals may be released, impairing aquatic life and threatening human health.
In short, too much algae from any source is unhealthy for the Buffalo River and those organisms (including us) which use and depend upon it.
It can get confusing, but briefly here is a run down on the hog CAFO permit situation as it applies to the Buffalo Watershed.

C&H is operating under a Regulation 6 General Permit.  C&H is the only facility ever granted this type of permissive permit in the state of Arkansas.  Earlier this year ADEQ announced the elimination of the Reg. 6 general permit.

C&H has applied for a Reg 5 permit.  This is a no discharge permit that is permanent.  In other words, it does not expire.  It is hard to see how the application can be approved until results of the drilling are known nor how the current "discharge permit" can qualify for a "no discharge" permit.
The National Audubon Society has approved IBA status for the Buffalo National River.  IBA stands for "Important Bird Area" and acknowledges that the park is valuable habitat for birds.
To learn more about the Buffalo River IBA click here.

SAVE THE DATE
FREE Concert in Harrison
Still A River- by musical duo Still On The Hill.

Friday, October 7 at the Lyric Theater on the square in Harrison

For more information about this and other free concerts visit stillonthehill.com

BRWA board member Brian Thompson attended the monthly AR Pollution Control and Ecology Commission meeting.  Here is an excerpt from his notes:
(drilling)  Mobilization occurred late Tues, set up Wed morning.  Began drilling about 1:00. Went 48 ft.   ADEQ Director Becky Keogh visited the site stating three reasons for being there:  1. to assure work was performed in a safe manner, 2. that we were being respectful of the landowner, 3. to make sure that our team that was mobilized was the team in our work plan.  She said that at end of day Thurs they hit 98 ft and did hit groundwater.   Expected to complete today (Friday).   Harbor expects information in about 6 weeks for preparing a final report.   Keogh re-iterated January as the date for her final report.   Keogh said she was very excited about getting results, but decided not to "wait for Christmas Morning”.   Didn’t want to taint things.
We leave you with this final thought.
• We were told clay liners were adequate, obviously that wasn’t true.  Now we are told a rubber liner will solve the problem.
A rubber pond liner is a temporary patch,
not a solution.
The Buffalo River Watershed Alliance is a 501c 3 nonprofit organization. 
Click here to DONATE

If you prefer to pay by check, make it payable to "Buffalo River Watershed Alliance" and mail to BRWA, P.O. Box 101, Jasper, AR 72641.
 
BRWA is an all volunteer organization.  contact us at  buffalowatershed@gmail.com
Copyright © 2016 Buffalo River Watershed Alliance, All rights reserved.


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