The Environmental Protection Agency announced this week that Iowa livestock confinement facilities will more more strictly regulated.
Enforcements actions, permits, and inspections are expected to be strengthened by the Clean Water Act work plan; an agreement reached by both the EPA and the Iowa DNR.
‘Working with states to safeguard Midwestern waters is among EPA’s highest priorities,’ said Karl Brooks, EPA Region 7 administrator.
The agreement is the result of the EPA’s investigation of Iowa’s permit and compliance program for confinement operations under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System program. The investigation was prompted by a petition to relieve the DNR of its authority filed in 2007 by the Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, Sierra Club and the Environmental Integrity Project.
Representatives of the petitioner groups hailed the agreement as a significant step toward clean water but cautioned that they will measure success by the Clean Water Act permits the DNR issues to documented polluters, the strength of enforcement actions going forward and the quality of the state’s rivers, lakes and streams.