WOTUS is Back for 26 States

By: Jason Herath, Farm Journal Media News Director. Published by AgWeb Daily

U.S. farmers thought they had seen the last of the beleaguered Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule in January when the Trump administration moved formally to rescind the regulation and start over with a new version. That broadening of federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act, however, became the law of the land in 26 states as the U.S. District Court for South Carolina ruled that the administration did not follow the proper rulemaking process in rescinding WOTUS. The court ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) did not meet requirements for public notice nor a sufficient comment period. Continue reading

From Across the Field – Fair Season in Full Force

In the past week I have had multiple conversation with colleagues, clientele, and stakeholders regarding the recent developments regard water quality in the Western Lake Erie Basin. Even though the vast majority of Henry county was not included in the eight named watersheds, my message at this point is no different than it was prior to the Governor’s announcement last week. OSU Extension, myself included, will continue our role in translating science-based information into practical strategies for addressing the water quality issues facing the state. Continue reading

High Temps, Sunlight Heighten Risk of Blue-green Algae in Farm Ponds

By: Pat Melgares, Kansas State University Extension
Previously published on Drovers online

The looming hot, summer weather and potential for lots of sunlight may bring with it a cause for concern among livestock producers.

Those conditions, combined with the often stagnant nature of farm ponds, heightens the risk of toxic levels of blue-green algae in producers’ watering sources, says Kansas State University beef veterinarian A.J. Tarpoff. Continue reading

Funding available to Ohio Western Lake Erie Basin farmers to improve water quality

The next round of funding is now available through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), as part of a five year, $17.5 million program funded by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). The goal of the program is to reduce nutrients entering Ohio waterways to lessen harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie. Funding is available to assist farmers in installing conservation practices that benefit water quality in the Western Lake Erie Basin. Continue reading

Fall Manure Application Tips

By Glen Arnold, CCA, OSU Extension Field Specialist, Manure Nutrient Management and Kevin Elder, Livestock Environmental Permitting, Ohio Department of Agriculture

With warmer than normal weather forecast for the next couple of weeks, corn and soybean harvest in Ohio is expected to get back on track. Livestock producers and commercial manure applicators soon will be applying both liquid and solid manure as fields become available.

For poultry manure, handlers are reminded to stockpile poultry litter close to the fields actually receiving the manure. Stockpiles need to be 500 feet from a residence, 300 feet from a water source and 1,500 feet from a public water intake. Poultry litter cannot be stockpiled in a floodplain and cannot have offsite water running across the litter stockpile area. The site also cannot have a slope greater than six percent. Continue reading

Conservation efforts working in Lake Erie

Ohio farmers are making positive impacts to water quality in the Western Lake Erie Basin (WLEB), according to a new report from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). This new report shows applied conservation practices reduce sediment losses from fields by an estimated 80% and reduce the amount of sediment being delivered to Lake Erie by an estimated 40%. Continue reading