Lehigh County Conservation District has been delegated by
Pennsylvania’s State Conservation Commission to administer the Act 38 Nutrient
Management Program in Lehigh County. The
Nutrient Management Program regulates the collection, storage, and application
of farms with an animal density above 2 AEUs per acre. In order to be regulated at this density, the
farm must have at least 8 AEUs total.
AEUs are animal equivalent units, often described as 1,000 lbs of live
Farms that have this density on their operation are
classified as Concentrated Animal Operations, or CAOs. Under state law, CAOs must develop a nutrient
management plan. That plan is then
reviewed by the Nutrient Management Specialist at LCCD. After review, the plan is sent to the LCCD
Board of Directors for final approval. Plans are written for three years, and
yearly inspections are done on site to verify compliance with the plan.
Operations that have a nutrient management plan are not only
in compliance with the law, but also enjoy limited liability protection from
the state. Farms that are not classified
as a CAO may develop a nutrient management plan in order to obtain limited
liability protection. Those operations
are called Voluntary Animal Operations, or VAOs.
If you need more information about Pennsylvania’s Nutrient
Management Program, please feel free to contact the Agricultural Resource
Conservationist at 610-391-9583 extension 26 or click here to go Pennsylvania's Nutrient Management website.