Dairy fined after Clean Water Act violations

By Joseph James Whitworth

- Last updated on GMT

EPA inspection finds environmental violations by Iowa dairy

Related tags Clean water act United states environmental protection agency

E&M Farms Inc. has agreed to pay a $7,500 civil penalty to settle violations of the Clean Water Act (CWA) at its dairy site.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) inspection and sampling of E&M Farms in Iowa documented pollutant discharges from the 500-head dairy facility to Dry Branch Creek, a perennial stream.

Pollutants came from outdoor production areas, including outdoor confinement pens. Manure and process wastewater from these areas flowed through a culvert to the stream.

Many dairies in Iowa have not sought CWA permits because they claim they do not discharge pollutants. For some dairies improper management of outdoor areas can result in significant CWA violations, said the EPA.

Because the discharge was from a man-made conveyance, the firm met the definition of a medium Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) and was subject to the CWA and federal regulation.

As part of a consent agreement, E&M Farms has certified it is now in compliance with the Clean Water Act. The agreement is subject to a 40-day public comment period before it becomes final.

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