April 13, 2011 / 12:32 PM / 9 years ago

U.S. EPA exempts milk from spill-control rules

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The government will exempt dairy farmers in an anti-pollution regulation aimed at control of oil spills, said the Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday, a step applauded by dairy producers.

EPA administrator Lisa Jackson announced the decision as part of the North American Agricultural Journalists meeting.

“That exemption is now — today — finished with White House review and will be published today,” said Jackson.

The National Milk Producers Association, which worked for two years on the exemption, which it called a common-sense decision. It said EPA agreed last summer to issue the exemption.

EPA requires oil tanks and containers and requires operators to write a plan to prevent and control spills. Jackson said the spill-control regulation also covered animal fats, which led to questions if it included milk storage tanks since milk contains animal fat.

The milk producer group said milk storage equipment is regulated under pasteurized milk rules.

Reporting by Charles Abbott; Editing by David Gregorio

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