(CN) - A Mississippi-based egg producer will pay $475,000 and take several other steps to bring one of its key poultry facilities into compliance with the Clean Water Act.
Under a consent decree with the Justice Department's Environment and Natural Resources Division and the Environmental Protection Agency, Cal Maine agreed to bring its Edwards, Miss. facility -- home to some 2 million chickens -- into compliance with its state-issued water discharge permit, significantly reduce nutrient pollution discharges, and improve its data collection and reporting practices.
According to the government. Cal-Maine discharged pollutants from the production area into a tributary of a nearby creek without NPDES permit authorization and applied nitrogen-laden wastewater on fields during winter months when land application was prohibited and at rates that exceeded their permit requirements.
Cal-Maine also committed hundreds of water sampling, recordkeeping and reporting violations, the Justice Department said..
Under the settlement, Cal-Maine is already developing and implementing procedures for its egg production and land application areas to achieve compliance with its NPDES permit, an employee training policy and improved recordkeeping and reporting practices.
The procedures were submitted to and reviewed and approved by EPA and Mississippi officials over the course of settlement negotiations. Cal-Maine has begun implementing these procedures and must comply with all the terms of the settlement by April 30, 2016.
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