Vilsack Addresses Dust Pollution

In a statement in Denver Colorado, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack reassured farmers worried about federal air regulations. The Environment Protection Agency, in a move that has garnered them considerable criticism, is revamping several environmental regulations, including air and water controls. The EPA has come under fire the last several weeks for enforcing and creating strict environmental regulations that many have claimed hurt farmers and agricultural producers.

Farmers and agricultural producers are worried that EPA revisions to air pollution regulations could hurt their businesses. Particularly worrisome are considered regulations to dust pollution, which is a significant part of agricultural production.

Groups like the American Lung Association are lobbying the EPA to strictly control dust pollution, arguing that air pollution, including dust and particulate matter, contribute to lung diseases. Other organizations, like the National Association of Clean Air Agencies, seek to strengthen air regulations on animal emissions.

Vilsack reassured farmers that he did not believe there would be significant air regulation. Claiming that he spoke with EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, who understood Vilsack’s and agricultural producers’s concerns regarding dust pollution. Some farmers remain unconvinced, however, including the American Farm Bureau Federation, which unsuccessfully sued the EPA in 2006 over airborne pollutant standards.

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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer