Enforcement letters going out to dairies on cropland application
June 20, 2008 - - On May 21, more than 160 Central Valley dairies were asked
for information regarding their application of manure and/or process wastewater
to crops grown for human consumption. This week, the Central Valley Regional
Water Quality Control Board announced it will be sending out enforcement action
letters to nine dairies in the Sacramento region and 12 dairies in the Fresno
region. Failure to file the reports could result in an administrative civil
liability of up to $1,000 for each day a report is late or incomplete, or
potentially a $5,000 per day fine if imposed by the Superior Court.
The letters were mailed out based on information contained in the PDFAs filed by dairies under the Waste Discharge Requirements in December 2007. Dairy owners have been asked to provide information about any application of manure wastes to crops for human consumption and to provide details about how the crop is grown, handled, and processed to “remove potential microbial danger to consumers.” The WDR states: “The term ‘crops grown for human consumption’ refers only to crops that will not undergo subsequent processing which adequately removes potential microbial danger to consumers.” Paul Sousa, WUD’s environmental specialist, advises members to respond to the letter with all pertinent information in their possession. Members are encouraged to contact their field representative for further information.