Report Details Methods for Reducing Dairy Emissions

Commission Urges County to Adopt Air-Quality Standards

Jul 06, 2007, 01:00 ET from Fresno Healthy Dairy Commission

    FRESNO, Calif., July 6 /PRNewswire/ -- A group of doctors, caregivers,
 clergy and other community members delivered to county officials on Friday
 a new report outlining the impact of large dairies on Fresno County's air
 quality, and urged planners to improve and implement a pending ordinance
 that would reduce toxic emissions from new dairies.
     "This research offers further evidence that the need for air-quality
 standards applied to dairies is more urgent than ever," said Lee Snyder, a
 retired doctor and member of the Fresno Healthy Dairy Commission. "If we
 want to protect the community from the numerous health problems associated
 with poor air quality, we must enact meaningful standards."
     The report was completed by the California Institute for Rural Studies
 at the request of the Fresno Healthy Dairy Commission. In addition to
 analyzing the county's dairy-related air pollution, it measures the
 potential impact of emissions-reducing technologies that have been put into
 practice at other dairies throughout the nation. Among its findings:
     -- Enclosed barns can reduce smog-forming VOC emissions by 80 percent and
        ammonia, a precursor to fine particulate pollution, by 65 percent.
     -- Lagoon covers with anaerobic digesters can reduce VOC emissions by 46
     -- Adopting these changes only at dairies with more than 500 cows would
        cost less than three cents per gallon of milk.
     -- California's dairy industry has annual profits of more than $600
     "Our research shows that available technology can reduce dairy-related
 emissions by a significant amount, and still be implemented at a reasonable
 cost," said Lisa Kresge, Research Associate at the California Institute for
 Rural Studies. "Dairy operators can take these steps to help improve Fresno
 County's air quality and continue to run healthy, profitable businesses."
     The commission is urging county planners to improve a dairy zoning
 ordinance currently under review. The ordinance as currently written does
 not include any standards to curtail emissions from large dairies-an issue
 of growing importance as Fresno County prepares for the influx of an
 estimated 50,000 dairy cows over the next five years.
     Members of the commission will speak at the next hearing on the
 proposed ordinance, Monday at 6 p.m. in the Cornerstone Conference Center,
 at 1525 Fulton St. in downtown Fresno.
     "The results of this research are crystal clear," said Georgia Sisson
 of the League of Women Voters. "The cost of enacting an ordinance that only
 addresses half the problem is too high. We need air-quality standards
 coupled with real enforcement to be sure that the public's health will be
     The report can be viewed online at
     The Fresno Healthy Dairy Commission is a coalition of Fresno County
 parents, doctors, caregivers, clergy and educators committed to protecting
 public health and preventing air pollution from mega-dairies.
     CONTACT: Charlie Eaton
     (559) 779-1032

SOURCE Fresno Healthy Dairy Commission