Cow Burps OK: House, Senate Block EPA From Regulating Livestock Emissions
By Kirsten Korosec Oct 28, 2009
Farmers can breath a little easier now — cows can burp and fart without fear of the Environmental Protection Agency regulating their methane emissions.
You may remember the “cow tax” rumors that floated around late last year and caused an uproar among farmers and ranchers worried the EPA planned to regulate methane gas emitted from livestock.
The EPA has said — repeatedly — it has no plans to impose a cow tax. But the idea was still worrisome for ranchers and farmers.
House and Senate conferees made it official Tuesday and approved an amendment to block agency efforts to require Clean Air Act permits for greenhouse gases emitted by livestock, according to reports from Greenwire and Scientific American.
Under the amendment, the EPA can not use funds to implement rules requiring livestock producers to obtain Clean Air Act operating permits for the biological emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases, according to the Scientific American report.
Even though the EPA claimed it was never going to implement a cow tax, it was an idea that was so dangerous that Congress needed to step and prevent this over-zealous agency from changing it’s mind. The cow tax would have easily eliminated livestock production in this country with the enormous per-head assessments being proposed. It’s an unfortunate situation when Congress has to step in to protects American citizens from an agency they created, but that’s exactly what happened her. Even though this was a small victory for us, it was a very important one.