Study Says Farm Runoff Contains Harmful Hormones

Research suggests that the hormones found in wastewater could present an environmental and health hazard.


Researchers from the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center have determined that wastewater from dairy farms contains potentially dangerous concentrations of estrogenic hormones—concentrations that could have a detrimental effect on the surrounding environment, and perhaps even threaten our food and water supply. According to the study, as cows lactate, they naturally excrete hormones in their urine and feces. However, because of the vast number of cows living on factory farms, wastewater has become a highly concentrated source of estrogen in the environment. Researchers say the presence of these hormones in farm wastewater could impair the reproductive functions of nearby aquatic animals, and could potentially enter the food supply by contaminating local crops.

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