New Clean Water Rule Now in Effect

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A new Iowa clean water rule designed to increase inspections of livestock farms and provide stricter enforcement over manure spills is now in effect after a year of hearings and deliberations by government agencies.

The rule, which took effect Wednesday, establishes new inspection and permit procedures. It does not impose mandatory permits for farms that repeatedly spill manure, a measure some environmental groups including Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement want.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources signed a deal with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last year to develop the new rule after the EPA threatened to take over federal Clean Water Act enforcement if state officials didn’t do more.

The federal agency says the rule meets its requirements, but Iowa CCCI says it’s still too weak.