Proposed hog confinement killed after rural neighbors speak out

 Fulton County farmer Matt Howe speaks out against hog confinements during a news conference Jan. 24, 2017, at the Capitol in Springfield. The Illinois Citizens for Clean Air & Water organized a news conference during which several residents from around Illinois spoke about the adverse effects hog and dairy confinements have had on their lives.

Fulton County farmer Matt Howe speaks out against hog confinements during a news conference Jan. 24, 2017, at the Capitol in Springfield. The Illinois Citizens for Clean Air & Water organized a news conference during which several residents from around Illinois spoke about the adverse effects hog and dairy confinements have had on their lives.

Facing opposition from local farmers, one of the state's largest pork producers has pulled its application to build a hog confinement in downstate Fulton County, handing opponents a rare victory in their efforts to slow the growth of the massive livestock facilities in the state. The hog producer, an affiliate of Professional Swine Management, formally withdrew its notice of intent to construct from the Illinois Department of Agriculture last week after sustained protests from neighbors who feared that waste from the proposed 20,000-hog confinement could foul rivers and creeks, and that the operation might ruin roads and jeopardize their rural way of life.