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Rule Reminder: Reporting manure and chemical releases

  • 9/3/2019 2:33:00 PM
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State laws require producers and manure applicators to report spills to the Iowa DNR. Not only is reporting required, but the sooner you report, the more likely DNR technical staff can help. DNR staff have experience with many spills. They may be able to offer ideas that you don’t think of—preventing a worse situation or a fish kill. Play it safe and call it in.

Here’s a quick reminder of state rules on reporting releases, especially manure releases:

Iowa producers are required to report manure and other releases. Chapter 65.2 (9) of the Iowa Administrative Code requires: Producers and those who store, handle, transport or land apply manure from a confinement (totally roofed) feeding operation to notify DNR as soon as possible but not later than six hours after the onset or discovery of the release. Report the release by calling DNR’s 24-hour spill line at 515-725-8694 or notifying the nearest DNR field office during business hours.

What is a “release?” A release is an actual, imminent or probable discharge of manure from an animal feeding operation structure to surface water, groundwater, drainage tile line or intake, or to a designated area resulting from storing, handling, transporting or land-applying manure.

Very similar rules exist for open feedlots: IAC 65.101(9). However, the definition of reportable releases also includes process wastewater, manure, open feedlot effluent, settled open feedlot effluent, or settleable solids from an open feedlot operation structure.

In both cases, if the release involves a public roadway and could threaten public safety, it should also be reported to the local police department or county sheriff.

Other spills that must be reported include: chemicals, wastewater discharges and underground storage tank failures—basically anything that is a hazardous substance or causes a hazardous condition. Find more information on DNR’s emergency releasepage.  

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