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New EPA Regulations Will Stifle Bradley County Farmers

In Uncategorized on July 12, 2011 at 10:44 AM

The far reaching of the effects of the EPA via The Clean Air Act will soon be stifling our Bradley County farmers and their businesses by regulating and fining them for the amount of GHG (GreenHouse Gases) their farm animals and produce emit!

Sound outrageous, to bad to to be true? As, we sleep, the Obama Administration is bypassing any resistance from many organizations and citizens to essentially pass elements of the defunct Cap and Trade Act which still lives with the existance of the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) via the Clean Air Act!

Since 1970 the Clean Air Act has been a bill passed by Congress. The most ominous sign regarding this bill is that many are revising and amending the bill as frequently as in 1990, 1997, 2005, April 2007 and as recently as July 1, 2011. This tells me that through many decades current administrations are still making this Act relevant. The premise that it is still around, is that it perhaps oozes of international involvement and is an important cog in the sustainable community wheel.

In 2007, the EPA was given authority to regulate GHG’s by an opinion of the US Supreme Court on cars and vehicles. On January 2, 2011, these regulations will apply to “stationary emitters” ie farms, produce and Agricultural businesses. July 1, 2011 Entities emitting only GHG’s will be required to obtain permits under the Clean Air Act.

This will greatly be enhanced by the current Executive Order 13575 and 13576 to further regulate “the rural community” by the Presidents Council on Rural Development. Makes sense to me that once they fine,tax and regulate you out of existence, they claim your land and convert it to some type of “Government Playground.”

Under the Clean Air Act, once the GHG’s emission rules become final, certain provisions that are expected to impose potentially costly and burdensome requirements on agriculture, farms, small business and the economy in general.

Title V of the Act requires “major sources” by statute, this means farms, business, etc that emit more than 100 tons of pollutants per year to obtain permits to continue operating and even stiffer permit fines and fees for those emitting 250 tons per year. This new amendment will regulate many farms not previously included.

The USDA recently commented to the EPA that “even very small farms would meet the 100 tons per year emission thresholds. Many of our farms in Bradley County will be included in this threshold and face many new regulations with fines and fees just to operate.
According to the USDA, in America, these regulations will directly affect 99% of Dairy Producers, 96.8% of hog inventory, 95% of hog production, and 90% of beef production. This will result in many farms across the Country and Bradley County to face stiff fines, taxes, fees and tons of new regulation. The USDA lows balls the impact on local farmers in the 100s of millions.

The EPA realizes this will be “a significant impact” on farmers and that permitting authorities will be “overwhelmed” by the increase numbers of entities subject to these new GHG requirements. So, they have introduced “ a tailoring rule” to introduce this to our farmers slowly over the next few years.

For the record the Farm Bureau has spoken out against the new regulations and I would encourage you to contact your local Farm Bureau and encourage they resist this with a vengeance, before it is too late.

How will these new regulations impact you in Bradley County. With these fines, taxes and regulations how can any farmers in the country or Bradley County survive.

Estimated per offense penalties, taxes and fines per event;
1) $ 175.00 per dairy cow
2) $ 87.50 per head of beef cattle
3) $ 20.00 per hog

Can you see how the fines, permits and taxes could add up quickly with a large farm or the immediate impact on a small Bradley County farmer, just barely making it day to day to have thousands per event added to his or her debt load.

With this thought in mind the EPA’s budget has been increased by 34 % recently and an estimated 43 million being dedicated to the enforcement of these new GHG regulations. Ozone meters will be placed in the general vicinity of every applicable farm and monitored for your farms emissions of GHG’s with expectations to decrease your emissions by 70%. That is unobtainable according to many farmers and will result in many of our farmers simply going out of business and losing their land. This new enforement of regulations are expected to cost the farmers 4.2 billion annually according to EPA estimates.

Of course, this cost will be passed on to the consumer by the farmer which will reflect higher food prices and further strain on your personal budget. The Green movement must be halted, bad science and estimates are driving this regulation, speak up now or lose the whole farm.

God Bless our farmers, we must keep them alive and well and out from under government control. They are the backbone of our country and should remain so.

Details of this article obtained from the Florida Farm Bureau, the USDA and EPA websites. Thanks for you contribution to this article.

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