A new report by the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Environment Group has found that the industrial factory farming of chickens produces millions of cubic feet of waste each year. Concentrated-feeding operations in Delaware and Maryland on the Delmarva Peninsula alone generated enough chicken waste to fill the US Capitol dome about 50 times, with much of the nitrogen and phosphorous by-products polluting the Chesapeake Bay. Almost nine billion broiler chickens were produced in 2007, up from 3.5 billion 25 years prior. Pew suggests that the growing industry should adopt reforms, such as limiting the density of animal production and proposing shared financial and legal responsibility between poultry growers and corporate integrators for managing waste, in order to limit environmental impact.
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