DNR continues to take reporting calls on new air quality rules

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The DNR is encouraging large livestock and poultry producers to continue to call and report air releases of ammonia and hydrogen sulfide as required by a new federal rule.

Producers who have missed the Jan. 20 reporting deadline should continue to call and not fear a $25,000 fine for late reporting.

"We've had a large response to the new rule from producers, and we are working hard to keep up with the volume of calls," said Kathy Lee with the DNR's emergency response section. "We appreciate producers' patience with us as we continue to catch up on calls. It's more important to report."

The DNR estimates that about 2,000 livestock or poultry operations could be required to report.

The new rule from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires only large animal feeding operations to report air releases of ammonia and hydrogen sulfide to state and local agencies. It exempts smaller livestock and poultry facilities from reporting under the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act.

Producers should call the DNR at (515) 281-8694 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. All reporting should be done through this main number, not through DNR field offices.

If a technical specialist is not available, producers can give their contact information to a receptionist and a technical specialist will return their call within a few days.

The federal requirement applies to concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs)-generally those with more than 2,500 finishing hogs, 700 mature dairy cows or 1,000 cattle. Poultry operations with more than 125,000 broilers or 82,000 layers on dry litter, 30,000 broilers or layers on wet litter, or 55,000 turkeys are also affected.

The DNR is working with livestock groups to provide reporting forms and information.

More information on the rule can be found on the EPA Web site at www.epa.gov/fedrgstr/EPA-AIR/2008/December/Day-18/a30003.htm

Information on how to calculate emissions can be found on the following Web sites:

- Kansas State & Texas A&M University partnership - http://cafoaq.tamu.edu

- Iowa State University - www.extension.iastate.edu/airquality

- University of Nebraska-Lincoln - http://manure.unl.edu

Within 30 days of calling the DNR, producers must submit a continuous release form to DNR - Emergency Response, 502 E. Ninth St., Des Moines, IA 50319. The form is available at www.epa.gov/emergencies/docs/chem/cont_rel/Continuous%20Release%20Form.pdf. Instructions can be found at www.epa.gov/superfund/policy/release/faciliti.htm.

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