The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has eliminated the requirement that a Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) owner or operator that “proposes to discharge” must apply for a permit.
The announcement was made Friday after EPA issued a final revised rule for its CAFO National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit regulation.
In addition, EPA has removed the voluntary non-discharge certification option for unpermitted CAFOs. The voluntary certification provision is unnecessary because the “propose to discharge” requirement is being removed.
This rule revision is in response to a 2011 US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit decision in National Pork Producers Council v. EPA, which vacated portions of the Agency’s 2008 CAFO rule.
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The court decision