FB Supports Bills to Exclude Livestock from Superfund

US - Bipartisan legislation introduced in both houses of Congress and strongly supported by the American Farm Bureau Federation would clarify that the severe regulatory provisions of the Superfund law, also known as CERCLA, should not, and were never meant to, apply to manure produced on livestock farms and ranches.
calendar icon 12 March 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
Lead sponsors of the legislation, Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) and Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), and Reps. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) and Ralph Hall (R-Texas), held a news conference this week to build support for their CERCLA clarification bills.

The bipartisan bills would clarify the fact that livestock manure, which many agricultural producers, both conventional and organic, use in their farming practices, is not a hazardous waste under CERCLA. Conversely, if normal animal manure were found to be a hazardous substance under Superfund law, then virtually every farm in the United States could be exposed to liabilities and penalties under the Superfund law, an outcome Congress never intended.

“Superfund was enacted more than a quarter-century ago to rein in industrial polluters and clean up toxic waste sites, not to be imposed on America’s farmers and ranchers,” said Stallman. “We’re pleased that members of both political parties and both houses of Congress are serious about clarifying the intent of the Superfund law.”

Stallman said clarifying that the Superfund law does not apply to natural animal waste on farms would “help remove the threat of multi-million dollar penalties that were never meant to apply to America’s farms.”

“Public safety and health, as well as water and air quality, are comprehensively protected by the federal Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act, along with other extensive environmental laws and regulations that apply to agriculture,” Stallman said. "Farmers and ranchers would simply be put out of business if they did not comply with existing rules, but adding CERCLA on top of that would present a harsh regulatory environment that would break the backs of independent livestock producers in particular.”

The AFBF president also noted that for the sake of environmental stewardship and to be good neighbors, farmers and ranchers across the U.S. participate in voluntary efforts to protect the environment, thus greatly enhancing the communities and local economies where they live and work.

TheCattleSite News Desk
© 2000 - 2024 - Global Ag Media. All Rights Reserved | No part of this site may be reproduced without permission.