Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Reporting Air Releases of Hazardous Substances from Animal Waste at Farms under EPCRA
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On November 9, 2023, EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan signed an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to solicit comment and information on reinstating the reporting requirements for animal waste air emissions at farms under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). EPA is seeking information on how to promote compliance and accuracy in reporting, how to streamline reporting requirements, a potential small farm exemption, and user needs for a reporting instrument, including identifying when reporting would be required.
The public comment period closed on February 15, 2024.
What information did the EPA solicit from the public?
The agency solicited comments under five general categories:
- Health impacts.
- Implementation challenges.
- Costs and benefits.
- Small farm definition and reporting exemption.
- National report on animal waste air emissions.
EPA was interested in comments on other potential solutions to provide air emissions information to fenceline communities that live near farms without burdening farms with estimating emissions and reporting to state, local, and tribal agencies. The agency requested information on creative solutions to reporting animal waste emissions, including developing a national report based on existing data sets or using other technology for estimating air releases. EPA also solicited comment on the benefits and challenges of potentially developing a national database for EPCRA reporting information.
On June 4, 2019, EPA signed a final rule to amend the emergency release notification regulations under EPCRA. This amendment added a reporting exemption for air emissions from animal waste at farms. On February 14, 2022, the D.C. District Court granted EPA’s motion to remand the final rule without vacatur. The court decision kept the EPCRA reporting exemption in place for all farms while EPA considers next steps.
Final rule: Amendment to Emergency Release Notification Regulations on Reporting Exemption for Air Emissions from Animal Waste at Farms; Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (84 FR 27533)