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6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Biology, Economics, Justice

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - South, USA - Midwest


YouTube Video

Hog Farming Has a Massive Poop Problem

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  • This video is about the environmental and social justice issues surrounding industrial hog farming practices, focusing on pig farms in North Carolina. 
  • Students will learn how industrial hog farms and contract farms "manage" the waste, how these practices impact the health and quality of life in the surrounding communities, the lack of regulations on the industry, proposed solutions, and why things are not yet changing. 
Teaching Tips


  • This video is a great, in-depth introduction to the systemic problems in the hog farming industry.
  • Multiple perspectives are included, which showcase the myriad of ways that this problem is impacting communities in North Carolina.

Additional Prerequisites


  • Language arts classes could use this resource for a debate about the environmental regulations that should be required for businesses to operate, or to analyze different points of view around a common issue.
  • This video can be used to think about and discuss how personal and household choices can impact larger and systemic problems. What can individuals do that could impact this type of farming? Why aren't more people making that choice?
  • As an extension to that discussion, students can make informational fliers that detail the high environmental cost of these hog farming practices and what individual consumers might do to influence large livestock corporations.
  • Biology, ecology, environmental science, health, and Earth science classes could use this video to introduce topics such as water pollution, air pollution, environmental causes of human health conditions, the nitrogen cycle, buffer zones, organic farming, regenerative farming, or plant-based nutrition.
Scientist Notes
The impact of a hog farm on the health of North Carolina citizens is demonstrated in this video. It also endangers surface and groundwater, as well as livelihoods, the environment, and the climate. This is an issue of environmental justice, and immediate action is required to alleviate the consequences. This video is ideal for classroom use.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
      • HS-ESS3-1 Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the availability of natural resources, occurrence of natural hazards, and changes in climate have influenced human activity.
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • HS-ETS1-3 Evaluate a solution to a complex real-world problem based on prioritized criteria and trade-offs that account for a range of constraints, including cost, safety, reliability, and aesthetics, as well as possible social, cultural, and environmental impacts.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.6.6-8 Draw on multiple disciplinary lenses to analyze how a specific problem can manifest itself at local, regional, and global levels over time, identifying its characteristics and causes, and the challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address the problem.
      • D4.7.9-12 Assess options for individual and collective action to address local, regional, and global problems by engaging in self-reflection, strategy identification, and complex causal reasoning.
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