Livestock Producers Encouraged to Participate in Water Quality Regulation Consultations

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2058. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.
calendar icon 10 February 2006
clock icon 3 minute read

Farm-Scape, Episode 2058

Manitoba cattle and swine producers are being urged to familiarize themselves with proposed provincial water quality regulations and to express any concerns they may have during upcoming public consultations.

The draft Water Quality Management Zone Regulation for Nutrients was developed to become part of the Manitoba Water Quality Protection Act which came into effect January 1, 2006.

In advance of a three week series of public consultation meetings, Manitoba Pork Council and the Manitoba Cattle Producers Association have scheduled sessions February 14 in Brandon and February 15 in Somerset to bring producers up to date on details of the proposed regulation.

Manitoba Pork Council Director Community Relations and Sustainable Development Peter Mah says, while the Water Quality Protection Act itself is not a concern the draft regulation, which proposes to regulate farm management practices based on water quality zone maps is inappropriate.

"What we're seeing here is that a lot of the maps themselves are high level reconnaissance scale maps which do not denote actually what's taking place on the ground. Therefor it intends to classify land inappropriately.

It sets in place certain practices, again restricts certain nitrogen and phosphorus applications, won't maximize ability to maximize crops, it's going require considerable changes in practices for producers which will be very costly and at the same time may not end up with any environmental benefits from the kind of practices that we see.

What we're trying to do is work with the government to ensure that we can work on this nutrient management issue together. We think it'll further environmental stewardship when we cooperate and look at some realistic practical means by which to manage nutrients.

Mah adds the proposed regulation focuses solely on agriculture and gives all other sources a pass when the research shows agriculture accounts for about 15 percent of the nutrient loading into Lake Winnipeg.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

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