Title

Healthy Livestock, Healthy Streams: Policy Actions to Promote Livestock Stream Exclusion

Item Type

Poster

Location

Elaine Langone Center, Terrace Room

Start Date

13-11-2015 8:00 PM

End Date

13-11-2015 9:59 PM

Description

Agriculture is a defining feature across the entire Chesapeake Bay region. The landscape of much of Maryland’s, Pennsylvania’s and Virginia’s watershed is defined by the contours, crop rows and patchwork of farm fields. For our Bay’s farmers, keeping livestock out of the streams has been a long-term challenge. It is important for cattle and other livestock to have ready access to water. In practice this means that livestock often loiter in and drink from both large and small tributary waters. When livestock are allowed access, they trample and erode stream bottoms, stream banks and streamside vegetation as they seek water to cool themselves and drink. This increases sediment erosion and nutrient runoff, while increasing water temperature. The direct deposit of feces and urine also contributes to high nutrient pollution and bacteria counts in the waterways. The states of Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia have each made commitments to help farmers implement livestock exclusion practices and establish riparian vegetative buffers to help improve water quality and meet Bay water quality goals. But practices are mostly voluntary, widely varied, and achieve mixed results. While some livestock producers have installed fencing to keep their stock from getting near or in the streams, many have not. This report investigates why so many streams are still accessible to and impacted by livestock. 1. Financial Burden 2. Absentee Landlords and 3. Aversion to Government Funding 4. Tradition 5. Not Enough Help 6. Confusing Options 7. Not Enough Flexibility 8. Over-Engineering 9. All or Nothing 10. Distrust of Government It further recommends policy actions to advance efforts to keep livestock from our streams. These recommendations fall into five categories: 1. Address farmer concerns and win their trust 2. Understand gaps in our programs 3. Better verification and accounting 4. Provide BMP options 5. Increased engagement of stakeholders

Language

eng

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Nov 13th, 8:00 PM Nov 13th, 9:59 PM

Healthy Livestock, Healthy Streams: Policy Actions to Promote Livestock Stream Exclusion

Elaine Langone Center, Terrace Room

Agriculture is a defining feature across the entire Chesapeake Bay region. The landscape of much of Maryland’s, Pennsylvania’s and Virginia’s watershed is defined by the contours, crop rows and patchwork of farm fields. For our Bay’s farmers, keeping livestock out of the streams has been a long-term challenge. It is important for cattle and other livestock to have ready access to water. In practice this means that livestock often loiter in and drink from both large and small tributary waters. When livestock are allowed access, they trample and erode stream bottoms, stream banks and streamside vegetation as they seek water to cool themselves and drink. This increases sediment erosion and nutrient runoff, while increasing water temperature. The direct deposit of feces and urine also contributes to high nutrient pollution and bacteria counts in the waterways. The states of Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia have each made commitments to help farmers implement livestock exclusion practices and establish riparian vegetative buffers to help improve water quality and meet Bay water quality goals. But practices are mostly voluntary, widely varied, and achieve mixed results. While some livestock producers have installed fencing to keep their stock from getting near or in the streams, many have not. This report investigates why so many streams are still accessible to and impacted by livestock. 1. Financial Burden 2. Absentee Landlords and 3. Aversion to Government Funding 4. Tradition 5. Not Enough Help 6. Confusing Options 7. Not Enough Flexibility 8. Over-Engineering 9. All or Nothing 10. Distrust of Government It further recommends policy actions to advance efforts to keep livestock from our streams. These recommendations fall into five categories: 1. Address farmer concerns and win their trust 2. Understand gaps in our programs 3. Better verification and accounting 4. Provide BMP options 5. Increased engagement of stakeholders