IMMAG - Iowa Manure Management Action Group

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April 2009 IMMAG Update

Welcome to the monthly update for the Iowa Manure Management Action Group (IMMAG) Web site. This update is provided as a service to inform you about changes made to the IMMAG Web Page or items of interest dealing with manure management and air quality from animal feeding operations. If you wish to subscribe to this mailing please click here. You may also view this update with direct links on the CURRENT NEWS site on IMMAG.


CURRENT NEWS: The Current News page on the IMMAG site is updated weekly. Please check this site often for the latest news regarding animal feeding operations and manure management issues.

Iowa RUSLE2 Database Update
The RUSLE2 database for Iowa has undergone a major update. This update includes a newly structured crop management zone 04 database, updated soils database, including updated crops and operation files. The new databases have under gone extensive revision and are required to be used by all when running the RUSLE2 program. To facilitate with the uploading of the revised databases into RUSLE2, a unified database including all files for base moses database, climate, soils, and crop management zones has been developed. This unified database including instructions on how to install it is available on-line at
An important point to note is how the new database will impact the work saved in the existing database. Review the instructions posted on the above web site carefully before proceeding with implementation of this update. The new database has a new file structure and thus is different from the one currently installed on your machine. As you update to the new database per instructions, it is recommended that you start reconstructing your profiles, watershed, and plan files. It is strongly recommended to not bring files over from the old database as there will be several broken links due to restructured database. For additional information, contact Kapil Arora at ISU Extension - Story County Office at 515-382-6551 or email

DNR Discontinues MMP Reminder Letters to Animal Producers
After June 30, 2009, the DNR will no longer send reminder letters to animal producers 45 days before their annual manure management plan (MMP) is due. However, the DNR is sending a final reminder letter to producers, which will include this important date. The letter will also notify producers when their complete MMP based on the P index will be due. Check for the MMP due date on the DNR web site at Find more information at

Next on the Horizon: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reporting
As we still try to work our way through Air Emissions reporting and other air quality concerns, the latest rulemaking regarding reporting Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions is staring us in the face. On April 9, the EPA published a proposed rule for mandatory GHG reporting from large sources in the U.S. This rule applies to all sectors of the economy, not just agriculture. In general, EPA proposes that suppliers of fossil fuels or industrial greenhouse gases, manufacturers of vehicles and engines, and facilities that emit 25,000 metric tons or more per year of GHG emissions submit annual reports to EPA. The gases covered by the proposed rule are carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFC), perfluorocarbons (PFC), sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), and other fluorinated gases including nitrogen trifluoride (NF3) and hydrofluorinated ethers (HFE) . At this point in time, the EPA estimates that only 40-50 of the largest manure management systems in the U.S. would be required to report.
This proposed rule is open for public comment until June 9, 2009. For more information on how to make comments please click here.
Impacts of this rule on manure management and the agricultural and livestock sectors are explained in the following Information Sheets:
Manure Management Systems Proposed Rule: Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases


Guide for the Agriculture and Livestock Sectors

For more information on this proposed rule please see this url.

Information on Anaerobic Digestion and Methane Recovery
I often get many requests for information on anaerobic digestion and there are many good resources for information but I thought I would highlight some recent resources posted to the AgSTAR Web page. The AgSTAR Program is a voluntary effort jointly sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Department of Energy. The program encourages the use of methane recovery (biogas) technologies at the confined animal feeding operations that manage manure as liquids or slurries. Presentations from the recent National Conference have been posted to the AgSTAR Web site at:

Other resources include:

the Methane Generation and Recovery section of the IMMAG Publications and Reports page at:; and

the Anaerobic Digestion section of the Agricultural Waste Management Web page at ISU.

EVENTS: For a complete list of events, please see the IMMAG events page at:

May 15, 2009. The Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center Webcast Series is titled "Greenhouse Gas Emissions from AFOs". This Webcast is available to all and can be accessed at:

June 8-10, 2009. The Midwest Extension Composting School will be held at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska, MN. For more information, including the program agenda and registration information please visit the Web at:

June 19, 2009. The Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center Webcast Series is titled "Composting Manure For Small Farms". This Webcast is available to all and can be accessed at:

July 22, 2009. The Upper Midwest Manure Handling Expo will be held at the Central Iowa Exp Site between Ames and Boone, IA. Currently the expo is accepting sponsorships and vendor applications. Additional information regarding this event can be found at:


Happy Spring!


Angela Rieck-Hinz
2104 Agronomy Hall
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011
(515) 294-9590
Iowa Manure Management Action Group

Manure sampling - Click on photo to enlarge

Manure sampling.


Newest IMMAG update available.