Farm Bureau is urging support for H.R. 5685, the Farm Regulatory Certainty Act, which will be introduced by Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Washington). The legislation clarifies congressional intent regarding the inappropriate application of regulations under the Resources Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976 to agricultural nutrient management.

More specifically, the bill would reaffirm and clarify congressional intent regarding the inappropriateness of subjecting agricultural byproducts to RCRA; codify the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulations regarding the treatment of agricultural byproducts under RCRA; and prevent farmers who are already engaged in legal action or are making a diligent attempt to work with state or federal governments to address nutrient management issues from being targeted by citizen suits.

In Jan. 2015, a federal judge in Spokane, Washington, sided with environmental activists who brought a lawsuit against several dairies in the state for what they claimed was inappropriate storage and handling of animal manure.