Trump, Congress make it harder for CAFO neighbors to know what they’re inhaling

Recent actions by the GOP-controlled Congress and the Trump administration have exempted big livestock operations from reporting air emissions, according to the latest story from FERN, published with Mother Jones.

“The moves follow a decade-long push by the livestock industry for exemption and leave neighbors of large-scale operations in the dark about what they’re inhaling,” writes Leah Douglas. “If that weren’t enough, environmental advocates warn that the failure to monitor those emissions makes it even harder to assess the climate effects of large-scale agriculture.”

Two laws, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) and the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA), “required farms to notify national and local emergency response committees, respectively, in the case of spills, leaks, or other discharge of hazardous waste.” But in March, Congress used the appropriations bill to add an exemption under CERCLA, and the EPA issued new rules in November to exempt large-scale operations under EPCRA.