EPA Proposing Additional Options for Animal Feeding Operation Rule

If you have large agricultural animal operations in your watershed, this article should be of interesr to you.

EPA is proposing additional options to a 2006 proposal for concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) under the Clean Water Act. This supplemental proposal has been published and is open for public comment until April 7, 2008. A webcast is scheduled for March 14, 2008, 12 to 2 pm ET.

Under current law, if CAFOs do not discharge pollutants to waters of the United States they do not need a Clean Water Act permit. This proposal would, for the first time, allow CAFOs to certify that they do not discharge. EPA is also proposing three different approaches for nutrient management plans (NMPs) that could be used by permitting authorities and CAFOs to determine application rates of manure, litter and wastewater to be incorporated into the permit. An NMP specifies the amount of manure that can be applied to crops so nutrient runoff to water bodies is minimized. EPA has been regulating CAFOs for more than 25 years. In response to a February 2005 federal court decision vacating some portions of a 2003 CAFO rule, EPA proposed a revised rule in June 2006. This proposed rule supplements the 2006 proposal by adding additional options.

EPA is hosting a webcast to provide additional information on the supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking for the CAFO NPDES program. Participants will be able to submit questions about the supplemental proposal to the EPA presenters during the webcast to gain a better understanding of this rulemaking effort. This webcast is intended to support the public comment period for this proposed rule, which closes on April 7, 2008.

Information on Animal Feeding Operations: http://www.epa.gov/npdes/afo/revisedrule

To register for the free webcast: http://www.epa.gov/npdes/training

Source: Water Headlines for March 10, 2008

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