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The assault against American industry and individual livelihood continues -- and no, it is not coming from Al-Qaeda or other foreign terrorists. A recent report from R-CALF USA, an advocacy group for American cattle producers, says the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has declared harmless cattle hay a "pollutant," which is part of the agency's agenda to squelch family-scale cattle ranches in favor of corporately-owned, mega-sized feedlot operations.
At the recent 12th Annual R-CALF USA Convention in Rapid City, SD, an audience member asked Mike Callicrate, a Kansas cattle feeder, if the EPA had, indeed, declared hay a pollutant. His affirmative answer was startling to many, but not necessarily surprising in light of the US government's apparent agenda to destroy every single producing sector in the nation and to reduce the country to a poverty-stricken, corporately-dominated wasteland.
"Now that EPA has declared hay a pollutant, every farmer and rancher that stores hay, or that leaves a broken hay bale in the field, is potentially violating EPA rules and subject to an EPA enforcement action," responded Callicrate. "How far are we going to let this agency go before we stand up and do something about it?"
Originally posted by neo96
i will say this government stupidity is hazardous us to our healthedit on 18-9-2011 by neo96 because: (no reason given)
After investigating the EPA-Callicate fiasco, Drovers/CattleNetwork, a news source for the beef industry, inferred that R-CALF USA’s release was somewhat "exaggerated." Reporters from the network contacted Dan Breedlove, assistant regional counsel for the EPA’s Region 7 office, who detailed the violations in the compliance order.
Breedlove noted that under the Clean Water Act, Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations can be subjected to four counts of violations: failure to maintain adequate records, failure to maintain adequate storage capacity, failure to maintain nutrient management plan requirements, and failure to operate production within controlled areas to prevent pollution.
Asked specifically what types of feed were stored in the feed stock area at the Callicrate facility at the time of the inspection, Breedlove says the area contained "distillers’ grains, silage and other feeds that could leach pollutants. It was not just hay." Feed stock storage areas are part of a feedlot’s production area subject to runoff-control regulations, he says, adding however that EPA focuses on feeds such as distillers’ grains with greater potential to leach nutrients, rather than hay.
Though R-CALF USA’s spirited allegation that the EPA labeled hay a pollutant may be somewhat of a stretch, Drovers/CattleNetwork concedes that cattle feeders are undoubtedly constrained by many burdensome EPA regulations. Feeding permits are expensive and meticulous record-keeping and reporting are time-consuming for owners and managers. And with new environmental regulations streaming through the government pipeline, they ought to brace themselves for more.
Order of Compliance lists four counts of findings of violations:
1.Failure to maintain adequate records
2.Failure to maintain adequate storage capacity
3.Failure to meet nutrient management plan requirements
4.Failure to conduct all production area operations within areas that are controlled in a manner capable of preventing pollution
Under each of the four counts, the order lists several specific points, including the following under count number 4:
•Respondent’s NPDES permit requires that all runoff and wastewater containing livestock or related wastes not collected or retained by water pollution control facilities shall be controlled in a manner capable of preventing pollution.
•On September 23, 2010, KDHE personnel conducted an inspection of the facility. The inspection revealed that the feed stock storage area was not controlled by waste retention structures.
•During the EPA inspection referenced in paragraph 16, the inspector observed that the feed stock storage area and composting operation were located in areas where process wastewater was uncontrolled by wastewater retention structures.
•Respondent’s failure to operate the feed stock storage area and composting operation within areas that are controlled in a manner capable of preventing pollution is a violation of Respondent’s NPDES permit and of Section 402 of the CWA, 33 U.S.C 1342, and implementing regulations. Any discharge of a pollutant to a water of the United States from these areas would be a violation of sections 301 and 402 of the CWA, 33 U.S.C 1311 and 1342.
Dan Breedlove, assistant regional counsel for EPA Region 7, notes that EPA defines a “large CAFO” as an animal feeding operation that stables or confines more than 1,000 cattle other than mature dairy cows or veal calves.
The Callicrate facility has a permitted capacity of 12,000 cattle and was confining approximately 3,219 cattle at the time of the inspection. So the feedlot is relatively small by industry standards, but fits EPA’s definition of a “large CAFO.”