The following is a press release from the Montana Farm Bureau Federation:
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is currently reviewing regulations for what is called particulate matter, which is basically soot and dust. Soot is what comes from car emissions and factories and is manmade. Dust is a different story. Its particles are larger, it’s naturally occurring and there is no scientific evidence in regard to being harmful to one’s health.
“Anyone who has operated a tractor or driven down a dirt road knows dust in the country is inevitable,” says Montana Farm Bureau President Bob Hanson. “The current regulations are working well. Increased regulations would be a definite burden on farmers and ranchers as they go about their daily chores.”
Hanson points out that regulations making farmers spray water on their fields on dusty days, regulating when they can plow, and even setting a painfully slow speed limit on dirt roads would be extremely onerous.
“There is some legislation in the works that takes health concerns into consideration,” notes Hanson. “The bill says if there are substantive health impacts that would result from dust, EPA can regulate further. It provides that state and local governments can regulate dust in localized areas in particular situations where it might be a problem, rather than imposing a national standard across the country.”
Hanson says dust is a fact of life, especially in rural areas. “Of course there’s going to be dust no matter what you’re doing in the field or even if you’re moving cattle down a dirt road. Trying to regulate it would curtail agricultural activity, and is obviously the impractical notion of people who have never spent time beyond the concrete of the Washington, D.C. Beltway.”
Source: Montana Farm Bureau Federation
Posted by Haylie Shipp