Jump to main content.

Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations Compliance Monitoring

CWA Topics

Under the Clean Water Act, Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) are defined as point sources. Operations that meet the regulatory definition of a CAFO may be regulated under the NPDES permitting program. The NPDES program regulates the discharge of pollutants from point sources to waters of the United States. The NPDES CAFO regulations describe which operations qualify as CAFOs, when a permit is required and sets forth the basic requirements that will be included in all CAFOs' permits.

EPA develops national enforcement initiatives that focus on significant environmental risks and noncompliance patterns . For Fiscal Years 2011 to 2013, and continuing through 2016, Preventing Animal Waste from Contaminating Surface and Ground Waters is a national enforcement initiative. The goal of the initiative is to reduce animal waste pollution from livestock and poultry operations that impair our nation’s waters, threaten drinking water sources, and adversely impact communities.

For information to help determine if you require a NPDES permit, EPA has prepared a Technical Manual for CAFOs.

EPA and state permitting authorities use several approaches to monitor compliance with environmental regulations.

EPA has put together a series of answers to commonly asked questions to help livestock and poultry operation owners and operators understand what to expect from EPA National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) inspections (PDF) (5 pp, 296K, About PDF)

Top of Page

Compliance Assistance | Compliance Monitoring | Compliance Incentives


Local Navigation

Jump to main content.