Livestock producers in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed are
experiencing increased scrutiny in the wake of the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency’s (EPA) recently established Chesapeake Bay Total
Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) guidelines. In an attempt to restore clean
water in the Chesapeake Bay and related waterways, the EPA is pushing
the TMDL, referred to by some as a “pollution diet,” as part of a
plan to put pollution plans in place by 2025. Environmental experts are
speculating the approach used in the Chesapeake Bay could eventually be
applied to other U.S. watersheds.
The Chesapeake Bay TMDL identifies the necessary reductions of nitrogen,
phosphorus and sediment in a 64,000-square-mile area including Delaware,
Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and the
District of Columbia. Different EPA jurisdiction areas in those states
are following detailed plans regarding how pollution will be reduced
within each area.
Now’s the Time to incorporate a Slurrystore System into your nutrient
management program. Slurrystore is compatible for any system whether
your goal is long term storage, nutrient retention, green containment,
digesters or manure processing. Plus Slurrystore Systems include the
added feature of agitation to help ensure nutrient consistency. Click here or contact your local
Authorized Slurrystore Dealer for more information.
The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) filed a lawsuit in
federal court earlier this week seeking to halt the Environmental
Protection Agency's (EPA) pollution control regulatory plan for
Chesapeake Bay. "We all want a clean and healthy Chesapeake Bay," says
AFBF President Bob Stallman. "This lawsuit is about how we get there.
Farm Bureau believes EPA's 'diet' for the Chesapeake is dangerous and
AFBF says the agency is overreaching by establishing a Total Maximum
Daily Load (TMDL). Farm Bureau has three basic objections to the TMDL
rule. First, AFBF believes that the rule unlawfully "micromanages" state
actions and the activities of farmers, homeowners and businesses within
the six-state Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Second, to establish the TMDL,
AFBF contends that EPA relied on inaccurate assumptions and a flawed
scientific model. AFBF claims that the TMDL violates the Administrative
Procedures Act's prohibition of "arbitrary and capricious" agency
action. Third, AFBF asserts that EPA violated a requirement that
agencies allow meaningful public participation on new rules. The suit
alleges that EPA failed to provide the public with critical information
about the basis for the TMDL and allowed insufficient time, with a
45-day comment period, for the public to weigh in on technical
information that EPA provided.
According to AFBF, EPA finalized the TMDL on Dec. 29, despite documented
discrepancies in the data it used to establish the TMDL. The six states
in the Chesapeake watershed (Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania,
Virginia and West Virginia) must now follow very detailed watershed
plans, or else EPA could block necessary permits and cut federal funding
to the states. "Farmers and ranchers already are taking real,
on-the-ground actions every day to improve water quality, actions that
have been shown by USDA reports to reduce soil erosion and provide other
environmental benefits," Stallman says. "Those actions will continue,
regardless of what happens with this lawsuit. We will take our complaint
to the courts while farmers continue the work of caring for our natural
resources and feeding the world."
Like it or not, sometimes winter manure application becomes a
necessity. Producers are urged to be aware of their state’s laws and
rules governing winter application before heading for the field. When
winter spreading is the only option, several key considerations should
be taken into account.
The best nutrient utilization will come from applying manure as close to
the time of crop uptake as possible, and that is not during winter, says
Douglas Beegle, Penn State Extension soil fertility specialist. “In
winter, when temperatures on the surface of the soil fall below
50oF, the potential volatilization losses are less. However,
there is significant potential for losses of surface-applied nutrients
in runoff from snow melt or winter rains under these conditions,” he
says. Beegle suggests applicators time application and select fields
based on how to minimize the potential for loss.
When you feed your pigs
Levucell® SB, you are taking the first step to raising
robust swine. Levucell SB helps:
• Improve daily gain and feed efficiency
• Condition sows for faster weaning
• Increase feed intake during lactation
www.ProfitablePigs.com to learn more.
The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers
(ASABE) announced recent completion of a new safety standard focused on
enhancing the safety of those working in and around confined-space
manure storages. The new standard, ANSI/ASABE S607, offers engineering
guidelines to safety specialists, engineers, designers and distributors
of confined-space manure storages. The guidelines will also aid storage
owners in ventilating manure storage areas prior to entry for retrieval,
repair or maintenance of equipment. Numerous farm fatalities occur each
year from related asphyxiation and poisoning. The risks of these tragic
outcomes can be reduced with forced ventilation, which has been shown to
be effective for replenishing oxygen and reducing noxious gases.
ASABE develops standards for food, agricultural and biological systems.
Conformance to ASABE standards is voluntary, except where it is required
by governmental entities. The documents are developed by consensus, in
accordance with procedures approved by the American National Standards
Learn more and see a current listing of all ASABE standards projects at
the ASABE Web site at www.asabe.org/standards/proposed.html.
The Nebraska CropWatch newsletter advises producers to
value and use manure resources wisely to gain benefits from nitrogen,
phosphorus and micronutrients as part of a strategy to help deal with
higher fertilizer prices in 2011. The advice appears as part of a story
offering 10 tips to help producers get the most from their fertilizer
investment. Read the other nine tips at cropwatch.unl.edu/.
The Dec. 9, 2010 issue of Nebraska CropWatch also features an
article co-written by University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) nutrient
management specialist Charles Wortmann and Charles Shapiro, UNL soil
scientist, outlining why manure use on cropland is a good investment.
The bottom line is that manure provides soil amendment effects that
often increase productivity for several years after application. UNL
Extension has developed a downloadable spreadsheet and guide entitled,
“Calculating the Value of Manure for Crop Production (EC 192).” This
is one of several UNL resources pertaining to manure management.
Download the spreadsheet and other resources online at water.unl.edu/web/.
Read the Nebraska CropWatch article at cropwatch.unl.edu/.
Are you getting optimum value from your ag nutrients? Ensure an even
nutrient blend and consistency with every load using a Slurrystore® and
its center agitation system. There’s no better choice for long term
ag nutrient storage. Now’s the Time for Slurrystore. Click here or contact your local
Authorized Slurrystore Dealer for more information.
Livestock producers should be managing nutrients properly and
taking the time to appropriately document nutrient management practices,
regardless of the size of the operation, according to Purdue University
animal scientists. “Every producer needs to have detailed records,
especially regarding manure issues, because those records are the only
proof of what’s been done,” says Tamilee Nennich, Purdue Extension
In an effort to provide an easy-to-use recordkeeping tool, Purdue
Extension, the Indiana Soybean Alliance and the Indiana Corn Marketing
Council have teamed up to provide free nutrient management recordkeeping
calendars. The calendars are designed to provide inspection reminders
and space for producers to write daily, weekly, monthly and annual
records. Calendar sections allow recording of rainfall and waterline
inspections, plus reminders to check lagoon marker readings, inspect
manure storage facilities for damage and make sure manure equipment is
in good shape.
Contact Nennich to obtain copies of the calendar by phone (765)
494-4823, or email email@example.com.
The eXtension Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning
Center will hold a Web cast on Jan. 21, 2011, comparing research results
for manure application and conventional fertilizer for soft red winter
wheat and corn. Ohio researchers have conducted five years of on-farm
research looking at liquid swine and dairy manure vs. urea applied to
the two crops. Details pertaining to those research results will be
presented live at 2:30 p.m. (EST) on Jan. 21. This Web cast will be
available for viewing along with other presentations in the archives on
Jan. 24. Learn more about the Web cast at www.extension.org/.
A total of 72 confinement site manure applicator workshops
will be held in 63 Iowa counties during January and February. Iowa State
University (ISU) is offering the two-hour workshops in cooperation with
the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
Iowa law requires confinement site manure applicators to attend two
hours of continuing education each year of their three-year
certification period, or to take and pass an exam once every three
years. If a confinement operator has more than 500 animal units, the
operator must be certified to apply manure unless the manure is applied
by a commercial manure applicator.
In addition to the confinement site workshops, a series of seven
dry/solid manure certification meetings will be held in February.
Workshops serve as initial certification for those applicators who are
not currently certified, recertification for those renewing licenses,
and continuing education for those applicators in the second or third
year of their license.
Learn more about rules, registration and fees by contacting an Iowa
Extension office, or visit the Iowa Manure Management Action Group Web
site at www.agronext.iastate.edu/immag/.
View the list of workshop locations online at www.agronext.iastate.edu/.
Producers attending the 2011 Agriculture’s Conference on
the Environment (ACE) on Jan. 27, 2011 in Lansing, MI, will be able to
learn how to use existing tools and online resources to lower farm odor
emissions during one of several environmentally focused workshops.
Participants will learn more about the new National Air Quality Site
Assessment Tool (NAQSAT) in a session entitled, “Reducing Your
Livestock Farm Odor Through Management.” The new NAQSAT is available
to livestock farmers to determine ways to reduce on-farm air emissions.
In another workshop session, Marty Matlock, University of Arkansas, will
present information about using management practices to maintain yields
while cutting energy use in a session called, “Evaluating Your Carbon
Footprint Can Save Money.” He says measuring an operation’s carbon
footprint gives farmers the ability to discover areas where they could
improve efficiency related to waste disposal, heating and cooling and
ACE 2011 will be held at the Lansing Center in downtown Lansing. In
addition to environmental topics, the conference will focus on key
topics important to Michigan’s farmers. Find additional information
and registration details online at www.maeap.org/ace.
The Midwest Manure Summit, a two-day conference focusing on
manure processing and handling, will be held Feb. 15-16, 2011 at Lambeau
Field in Green Bay, WI. A host of speakers will provide the latest
perspectives on air quality, biofilters, manure system hazards,
digesters and many other topics. Learn more at www.midwestmanure.com.
Winter manure storage and spreading strategies will be part
of the program during an ongoing series of Illinois Certified Livestock
Manager Training (CLMT) workshops being held throughout Illinois in
coming weeks. Four workshops were scheduled during January, with two in
February and one in March.
Phosphorus management approaches such as subsurface injection and
feeding livestock lower-phosphorus rations will be presented as options
to lessen runoff. Representatives from the Illinois Department of
Agriculture (IDOA) Livestock Facilities Program will provide information
at each workshop about the rules related to the Illinois Livestock
Management Facilities Act. The act requires producers with more than 300
animal units to obtain certification in livestock manure management. The
certification must be renewed every three years. The IDOA certification
exam is offered after each CLMT workshop.
Other topics being addressed during the workshops include manure
application in no-till fields, solutions to feed storage runoff
challenges and an update on manure pit foaming issues.
Register for a workshop or purchase a manual or CD by calling (800)
345-6087. An online workshop brochure and schedule of meeting locations
is available at www.livestocktraining.com.
Contact Randy Fonner, University of Illinois Extension specialist and
CLMT workshop coordinator, at (217) 333-2611.
It’s not too early to make plans to head to Norfolk, NE,
for the 2011 North American Manure Handling Expo on July 20. The Expo
theme of Professionalism in Manure Management will be emphasized through
commercial field demonstrations, hands-on product and safety programs,
educational sessions and commercial vendor displays.
The 2011 North American Manure Handling Expo is sponsored by University
of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension and is supported by a consortium of land
grant universities and conservation agencies, in partnership with
Nebraska Custom Applicators and the Iowa Commercial Nutrient Applicators
Visit the program Web site for more information at www.manureexpo.org/.