Thursday, June 17, 2010

Just in from Washington

EPA Agrees to Strengthen Oversight of Feedlots as Part of Water Settlement:

(From the Daily Environmental Report)

Washington-The Environmental Protection Agency has agreed to tighten the oversight of animal feedlots, where bacteria, viruses, and parasites from animal waste can pollute nearby waterways, under a settlement filed May 25 to resolve a lawsuit by environmental groups (NRDC v. EPA, 5th Cir., No. 08-61093, final settlement 5/25/10).

Under the final settlement agreement, filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, EPA agreed to propose a rule within one year to require all concentrated animal feeding operations, or CAFOs, to submit details to the agency about their operations and to update the information every five years.

The requirement to submit information would apply to all CAFOs, not only those that are now required to have permits under the Clean Water Act.EPA also agreed to make publicly available by May 28, 2010, a guidance document to help authorities implement National Pollution Discharge Elimination System permit regulations and effluent limitations guidelines and standards for CAFOs by specifying exactly what circumstances trigger the duty to apply for permits, according to the settlement agreement.

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