Poultry Litter Waste Management Legislation
Farm Business Management Update, February 1999
By Jim Pease of the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Virginia Tech
Legislation mandating the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to develop a poultry litter waste management program has passed unanimously in both houses of the General Assembly. The proposed regulatory program will apply to "confined poultry feeding operations" with 200 or more animal units of poultry, which is the equivalent of 20,000 or more broilers or layers and 11,000 turkeys or more. The regulatory program will govern the storage, treatment, and management of poultry manure and litter. It has three general requirements: 1) development and implementation of nutrient management plans, 2) waste tracking and accounting, and 3) storage of waste consistent with the nutrient management plan.
Specifically, the program will include at a minimum that
DCR may adopt any further regulatory changes identified by the review which require phosphorus application rates in nutrient management plans to "protect water quality or to reduce soil concentrations of phosphorus or phosphorus loadings."
Violations of the provisions of this program will be subject to civil penalties not exceeding $2,500. Each day of violation constitutes a separate offense.
Requirements are also stipulated for poultry processors. On or before January 1, 2000, poultry processors must submit a plan to the state indicating how they will
Regulations of this program must be adopted by the State Water Control Board no later than October 1, 2000. An advisory group will be organized to assist in the development of the program and will consist of a minimum of 3 representatives each from poultry growers, poultry processors, and environmental organizations.
DCR is required to submit recommendations by December 20, 1999 on ways that the Commonwealth can assist poultry growers and processors to transport and market poultry waste as well as alternative uses of poultry waste.
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