LOS ANGELES, California, October 2, 2008 (ENS) - Six dairies in the Chino, California area have been ordered to comply with California Regional Water Quality Control Board permit requirements by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Through an administrative order, the EPA is ordering Brothers Three Dairy, Quality Dairy, Jorritsma and Anema Dairy, Martin Vander Laan Dairy, TLC Sonlight Dairy #2 and Goyenetche Dairy #2, to comply with permit requirements which require that dairies prevent runoff or discharge from their operations to nearby waterways, such as the Santa Ana River.
"The EPA is citing these six Chino dairies for failing to comply with California's dairy permit, which is designed to protect streams, rivers and groundwater from discharges of manure waste and other pollutants," said Alexis Strauss of the Water Division, EPA Region 9.
"We expect these dairies to promptly correct their violations and improve their environmental performance, which we will oversee until satisfactorily resolved," she said.
In April, personnel from the EPA and the California Regional Water Quality Control Board's Santa Ana Region inspected the Chino dairies.
They found many violations of state and federal clean water regulations including failure to properly construct and maintain containment structures and failure to conduct proper routine inspections.
The order for compliance states, "All containment structures, including, but not limited to, ponds, berms, and wastewater distribution lines, shall be inspected at least once each week during the entire year and at least once each 24-hour period during a storm event in which rainfall exceeds 0.5 inches in 24 hours."
The inspectors also found the dairies had failed to develop or implement proper Engineered Waste Management Plans. And the dairies had failed to properly monitor and report their discharges to the California Regional Water Board.
The dairies each received a compliance order requiring them to submit within 60 days their Engineered Waste Management Plans, details of what they will do to comply with the regulations, and a copy of the reporting log they intend to use in the future, among other requirements.
The Santa Ana River watershed is located in southern California, south and east of the city of Los Angeles. This watershed is an arid region, and there is little natural perennial surface water in the watershed.
Yet the watershed has one of the fastest growing populations in California. It is home to home to 4.8 million people who live in the most developed portion of Orange County, much of the built-up portions of Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, and a small portion of Los Angeles County.
There are numerous demands on water in the Santa Ana watershed. Despite development, the area still contains concentrations of citrus, dairy, and other agricultural areas that demand significant quantities of water. The area has a large industrial/commercial base, and the rapidly expanding population demands a large quantity of water, making the discharge of manure by these dairies a serious issue.
These joint inspections are an ongoing focus of EPA Region 9 and the Regional Water Quality Control Board's Santa Ana Region to ensure compliance with the dairy general permit, which helps to protect human health and the environment.
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