Wednesday, November 9, 2011

New Confined Feeding Regulations Approved For Indiana Livestock and Poultry Farmers

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) has completed the rulemaking process for the promulgation of new confined feeding operation (CFO) regulations.  Today, the Water Pollution Control Board approved new CFO regulations, which will go into effect on July 1, 2012.

The new regulations contain a number of changes to how Indiana's medium and large livestock farms will be operated.  Of particular importance are three new provisions that will significantly change daily operations for many of Indiana's livestock producers:
A rare sight?  A manure spreader
on snowy winter day.  
1.  The new regulations prohibit spreading of manure on frozen or snow covered ground for CAFOs, Indiana's largest livestock farms.  Smaller livestock farms--called CFOs in Indiana--can land apply to snow covered or frozen ground only under specific conditions, such as emergencies.  There is also an exception for older CFOs that were permitted with only 120 days of manure storage capacity, unlike the 180 days that is required now.
2.  In the past, land application rates were determined based upon the nitrogen needs of the next planted crop. The new CFO regulations limit application based upon phosphorus content.  Livestock farms must monitor phosphorus levels on cropland to assure that it does not exceed 200 parts per million (ppm).  For new operations, these requirements go into effect immediately.  For existing CFO operations, there is a gradual phase in period.  
3.  IDEM currently has the authority to require groundwater monitoring for large CAFOs.  But IDEM has seldom required farms to monitor groundwater in the past.  The new CFO regulations contain specific provisions that allow IDEM to require groundwater monitoring.  Sampling results must be periodically reported to IDEM.  In addition, farmers must self report if they determine that their groundwater samples show a "statistically significant" deviation from prior samples.  
Most of Indiana's large livestock farms, or CAFOs, will eventually be covered by the new CFO regulations as result of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal's decision in National Pork Producers Council v. EPA (discussed in previous blog post: click here).  Therefore, the new regulations will have a far reach, applying to almost 2000 of Indiana's livestock farms.

By Todd Janzen


  1. Were the new NPDES rules adopted as well? Do you have a link to a document or story showing the outcome of the meeting?

  2. Yes, new NPDES rules were adopted as well. They can be found at I will put them in another blog post.

    The CFO rules were passed 6-2 by the Water Pollution Control Board. The new NPDES rules were passed 8-0.


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