Expect More Public Review of Ag Operations

EPA and Poultry Hearing

Lewis Martin, West Pennboro Township in Cumberland County Pennsylvania, is proposing to build a 31,000 SF poultry barn located 1,645 feet from the Big Spring Creek watershed. In his National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit application, he proposes to disturb 8.24 acres to construct poultry houses on his property. The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit application is required to address the project's erosion and sediment control and post-construction storm-water management.

"DEP [PA Dept of Environmental Protection] of has received numerous requests for a public hearing from citizens wanting to voice their concerns about the potential for runoff and disturbance to water sources from the poultry barns," DEP South-central Regional Director Rachel Diamond said. "Those comments are valuable to DEP and will be considered with final review of the permit application."

Of concern is the effect of the poultry operation on the Big Spring Creek watershed, which is a trout fishery and high-quality stream. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, March 6, 2012, to receive testimony.