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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Air Emission Standards

Authors
item Miles, Dana
item Owens, Phillip
item Sistani, Karamat

Submitted to: The Poultry Federation Annual Poultry Symposium
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: April 27, 2004
Publication Date: April 27, 2004
Citation: Miles, D.M., Owens, P.R., Sistani, K.R. 2004. Air emission standards: Poultry production and ammonia. Proceedings The Poultry Federation Annual Poultry Symposium. p.8-11.

Interpretive Summary: Air emission standards for poultry production in the U. S. have been reviewed in the following report: Air Emissions from Animal Feeding Operations: Current Knowledge, Future Needs (National Research Council, 2003) and from the National Emission Inventory-Ammonia Emissions from Animal Husbandry Operations, Draft Report (Environmental Protection Agency, January 30, 2004). Currently, ammonia emissions from poultry operations receive the most attention. The Clean Air Act establishes a threshold emission limit of 100 tons per day of any air pollutant. However, both the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (also known as Superfund) and the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act have reporting requirements of 100 pounds of ammonia per day or 18.3 tons per year, a level which may affect large animal production facilities. In February 2002, the Sierra Club initiated a lawsuit against four Western Kentucky poultry farms and Tyson Foods Inc. for violating these federal regulations with extreme amounts of ammonia and dust emissions. At present, no clear, allowable air pollutant emission rate has been published specifically for or applied to animal production. Until science-based emission rates are available for U. S. poultry producers, permitting activities may not be substantiated.

Technical Abstract: Air emission standards relevant to poultry production in the U. S. have been reviewed in the following report: Air Emissions from Animal Feeding Operations: Current Knowledge, Future Needs (National Research Council, 2003) and from the National Emission Inventory-Ammonia Emissions from Animal Husbandry Operations, Draft Report (Environmental Protection Agency, January 30, 2004). Currently, ammonia emissions from poultry operations receive the most attention. Ammonia is regulated in the Clean Air Act, as a precursor to particulate formation. The Clean Air Act establishes a threshold emission limit of 100 tons per day of any air pollutant. However, both the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (also known as Superfund) and the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act have reporting requirements of 100 pounds of ammonia per day or 18.3 tons per year, a level which may affect large animal production facilities. In February 2002, the Sierra Club initiated a lawsuit against four Western Kentucky poultry farms and Tyson Foods Inc. for violating these federal regulations with extreme amounts of ammonia and dust emissions. At present, no clear, allowable air pollutant emission rate has been promulgated specifically for or applied to animal production. Until a plausible model for emission rates resulting from sufficient science-based data is available for U. S. poultry producers, permitting activities linger unsupported.

Last Modified: 11/28/2014
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