A River of Waste The Hazardous Truth 2009

ARiver of Waste: The Hazardous Truth 2009


ARiver of Waste: The Hazardous Truth 2009

&quotARiver of Waste The Hazardous Truth About Factory Farms&quot aMcCorkell Don directed documentary, talks about the issues of thepoultry and meat industry pollution in the environment (McCorkell,2009). Corporate breeding ranches especially the big ones, causefatal pollution issues that pose as a danger to the environment andtherefore to the people living in those environments. Waterprivatization, food supplies with hormones, hereditarily customizedfoods, chemicals which are toxic found in food supplies are some ofthe concerns that should be prioritized (Mercola, 2013). Thisdocumentary exposes massive environmental and health scandalsassociated with the industry. Farms with these factories becomebreeding places for pollution and diseases. There were assumptionsthat a farm of hog breeders in Mexico City was the Origin of thelatest swine flu outbreak due to their untreated waste (McCorkell,2009). The industry is also dominated by other issues such asantibiotics and dumping of sewage in large amounts into delicateenvironments and waterways. This film educates on the huge disastrouscauses towards public health and the environment as well as thedamage caused to the individual’s lives as well as determining thebest ethical approaches to be followed in such situations. We look atsome of the ethical theories in relation to these industries.



Thistheory deals with the outcome or the results got from dumping ofthese animal waste products (Messerly, 1995). They bring about theissue of diseases in the sense that when these wastes are notproperly disposed or not treated as ought to be, diseases crop up andthey spread even to the humans living in those areas causing havoc intheir lives. The lives of these individuals get spoiled anddestroyed. The use of substances like growth hormones on theseanimals also affects humans. After the animals are processed intoconsumable meat, the growth hormones continue working inside thehuman bodies. This causes health issues to the persons consumingthese products (Messerly, 1995). Therefore, the ranches can be namedas breeding places for pollution and diseases. Some of the activitiesshould not be encouraged irrespective of their produce. Actions thataffect the people positively should be considered first whether it isthe right or thing.

Duty/ Rule-based

Thistheory deals with rules set to enable the users in decision making.The film helps the public in coming up with the right decisionsregarding the industry’s wastes. This theory is all about doing theright thing and avoiding actions that are wrong. There is theresponsibility of always doing the right thing irrespective ofwhether the outcome will be bad. Human beings are very valuable.Anything violating their rights should not be permitted. They have aright to healthy environment, safe food supply, natural animalproducts and so forth. If any of these rights are violated, they havean obligation to raise an issue of the same. The interest of oneperson, whether differing with other persons or not should not beignored. The purpose of the film is to expose some of the firms thatare taking hold of people’s water and food supply without havingthe worry that pollution and pollutants are affecting the people.These threats are very dangerous since they cover basic necessitieslike water and food yet the press use so much time on politicalissues. This creates a diversion of the same.

SocialContract Theory

Socialagreements are essential for good living. The reasoning ofindividuals creates this contract (CvitanicÌ &amp Zhang, 2013). Asnoted by CvitanicÌ &amp Zhang (2013), a person can hunt for peaceif another person is doing the same but hunt for war where others aredoing the same. For a social contract to exist there must be similarideas. Some of the agreements within a community are people notharming each other and keeping the agreements that they will rely oneach other. However, the government may come into the picture toensure that the above is followed. A social contract between thefarmers and the people living in these environments should besupervised by the government to ensure that they are followed to theletter. Parties of a social contract are people living under the ruleof the government. There are standards to which humans treat eachother as per their agreements. Creation of an order is a requirementfor people’s cooperation and production of social goods. Moralityconsists of rules to guide people on ways of getting along with eachother while the government enforces social living rules which are anecessity. The government and citizen’s relationship should not beforced. There is a choice to either abide by contract’s terms or goback to the original state (CvitanicÌ &amp Zhang, 2013).


Thisethic is where people pursue their own interests. Some people mayrefuse to cooperate with others in order to follow their own selfishgains even if it means it will cost another person’s livelihood(Kendall, Yao &amp Chong, 2007). The ranch owners may realize thatthey are gaining a lot with the use of substances like the growthhormone and hence assume the risk factors associated with it towardsthe humans. High produce profits may act as a factor for ignoringsuch threatening issues (Kendall, Yao &amp Chong, 2007). This ethictends to fall on the poultry and meat industry owners since they arethe ones benefiting a lot from these.


Thepurpose of the film was to educate the public on the negative impactsof the wastes from these poultry and meat industries. It brings tolight the huge health risk factors as well as environmental factorscaused by these industries. It is meant to condemn the selfish actsof these factories as well as trying create ethical values that willact as a go between for the people and the owners to create anenvironment that will favor both parties. The question is well statedsince it covers the most important aspect of the human pollution. Oneis able to come up with the required answers since the question isdirect to the point. There is relevant evidence and experiences. Forinstance, this documentary exposes massive environmental and healthscandals associated with the industry. The industry is dominated byissues such as Water privatization, food supplies with hormones,hereditarily customized foods, chemicals which are toxic found infood supplies, antibiotics and dumping of sewage in large amountsinto delicate environments and waterways.

Theinformation is known to be accurate since it has been obtainedthrough research. The interviews involved politicians, concernedcitizens and scientific experts. The concept of the film has beenclearly brought into light. The producer has explained quite well thearrival of his conclusions. Some of the ethical concepts applicableare as stated above. There is however some major point of view forexample pollution of environment which the producer has clearly shownthat they can be easily achieved. The implication of the documentaryis that the poultry and meat industries can create environmentalhavoc for the inhabitants or be environmental friendly if they becomemore responsible.


Cvitanić,J., &amp Zhang, J. (2013). Contracttheory in continuous-time models.Berlin: Springer.

Kendall,G., Yao, X., &amp Chong, S. Y. (2007). Theiterated prisoners` dilemma 20 years on.Singapore: World Scientific.

McCorkell,D. (2009, July 14). A River of Waste: The Hazardous Truth AboutFactory Farms (2009). Retrieved From,http://www.amazon.com/River-Waste-Hazardous-Truth-Factory/dp/B002CA68GG

Mercola,(2013). ARiver Of Waste: The Hazardous Truth About Factory Farms.Retrieved From,http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/04/06/river-of-waste-documentary.aspx

Messerly,J. G. (1995). Anintroduction to ethical theories.Lanham, Md.: University Press of America.