Groups back EPA, try to join W.Va. farmer lawsuit

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 7, 2012 at 8:45 am •  Published: December 7, 2012
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Alt sued the EPA in June, acknowledging that there is waste-tainted runoff from her farm. But she argues it's agricultural storm water, not "process wastewater" that would be subject to regulation under the Clean Water Act.

She wants the court to set aside the EPA's order, which could result in fines of up to $37,500 a day if she's found in violation of what she calls an arbitrary, capricious and illegal action.

Last fall, the EPA determined that dust, feathers and fine particles of dander and manure from Alt's poultry house ventilation fans could land on the ground, come into contact with storm water and flow into ditches, eventually reaching Chesapeake Bay tributaries.

The EPA is focused on protecting the watershed, which encompasses parts of Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia, and all of the District of Columbia.

"This case should not be used as a tool to create new exemptions from established and vital environmental laws," said Andrew Kimbrell, executive director of the Center for Food Safety. "Factory farms cannot be allowed to use the Potomac — or any waterway — as a private sewer."



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