Environmental group not to pursue appeal against Perdue
The Waterkeeper Alliance, environmental group, has announced it will not appeal the judge’s ruling in the case they brought against Perdue Farms and an Eastern Shore contract grower for alleged poultry pollution.
In a statement from the group they said that while they believe they presented compelling evidence, they will not be appealing US District Judge William Nickerson's ruling last month in a case that had broad implications for the state's poultry industry.
"Given the high burden appellate courts impose for reversing a district court's findings of fact, Waterkeeper Alliance will not appeal Judge Nickerson's decision," the group said in a statement.
State Sen. Richard Colburn, R-Dorchester, said he was pleased the legal matter was over.
"To have pursued an appeal of Judge Nickerson's ruling would have only further harmed a family farm already cleared of wrongdoing and would further undermine future cooperation between agriculture and responsible environmental groups," Colburn said in a statement.
Waterkeeper alleged that chicken litter was being discharged from the Hudson Farm in Berlin, Maryland, into a tributary of the Pocomoke River. And filed a federal lawsuit in 2010, after representatives from Waterkeeper flew over the farm and identified what they initially believed to be a large uncovered pile of chicken manure. The piles were eventually found not to be chicken manure.
Lawyers for Perdue, which owned the chickens and the Hudson family said chicken manure wasn't getting out in great enough amounts to pollute, and farmer Alan Hudson testified that he took steps to avoid pollution and to keep the manure in chicken houses.
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