The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has withdrawn a proposed rule that would have required concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) to report information to the federal agency about their operations, regardless of whether the CAFO discharged into waters of the United States.
In 2011, USEPA proposed a reporting requirement in response to a 2010 settlement agreement that the agency reached with certain environmental petitioners, including the Natural Resources Defense Council, Waterkeeper Alliance and the Sierra Club. The proposed rule would have required the submission of, among other things, contact information, the location of a CAFO’s production area, permit status, the number and type of animals confined and the number of acres available for land application of manure. Livestock organizations vehemently opposed the reporting rule and submitted numerous comments on the proposed rule.
In withdrawing the proposed reporting rule, USEPA concluded that, instead of requiring a separate submittal, it would collect the data using the already existing sources of information, including state NPDES programs and other programs at the federal, state and local level.