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Developing an Environmental Management System (EMS) Approach for Pork Operations in North Carolina A. R. Rubin, Professor and Extension Specialist, NCSU – BAE and Beth Graves and Jamie Ragan, Program Specialists, NCDPPEA EMS Forum, Alexandria, VA. Incentive.

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Developing an Environmental Management System (EMS) Approach for Pork Operations in North CarolinaA. R. Rubin, Professor and Extension Specialist,NCSU – BAEandBeth Graves and Jamie Ragan, Program Specialists, NCDPPEAEMS Forum, Alexandria, VA.

  • 1992 – Smithfield Foods Production facility, Tar Heel, NC
  • NPDES Permit Renewal
    • 2000 Attorney General Agreement
    • EMS required on corporate farms
    • 2001 Murphy-Brown achieves ISO certification
    • Contract and Independent farms need assistance
  • DPPEA/CES Program
  • EMS Outcome
dppea ces program
  • Solicit input from regulatory agencies
  • Application and Selection of pilot farms
  • Develop EMS in cooperation with SWCS/DPPEA/CES and Farmer
  • Training
  • Template development
  • Share information
demonstration farms
Demonstration Farms
  • Competitive Selection Process
  • 8 selected and 7 completed process
  • Monthly meetings
    • Cooperative Extension Representatives
    • Responsible individuals from target farms
  • DPPEA – EMS Knowledge
  • CES/SWCS – Environmental issues, nutrient/waste management, TRUST!
  • Communication between ALL involved
  • Monthly on-farm meetings
  • Caution – be careful of early retirement programs!!!

Development of the EMS for my farm has made me a better businessman and environmental steward…Bundy Lane, Gates County, NCThe EMS effort has helped develop a feeling for the neighbors around my facility…Chuck Stokes, Ayden, NC

why implement an ems
Why Implement an EMS?
  • Helps to identify the causes of environmental problems.
    • better to make a product right the first time
    • cheaper to prevent a spill
    • cost effective to prevent pollution
  • Trade and competitive issues
    • marketing tool
why implement an ems10
Why Implement an EMS?
  • Struggling to stay in compliance and keep track of regulations/laws
  • Environmental management just one of many responsibilities
  • Employee turnover
  • Establish a framework to move beyond compliance
  • Vehicle for positive change; improved employee morale, enhanced public image
  • Much of an EMS may already be in place
build on what s there
Build on What’s There
  • Animal Waste Management Plans
  • Best Management Practices (BMPs)
  • On Farm Assessment Program (available to pork producers), Smithfield Agreement
  • Certified Animal Waste Operator training program (NCDWQ/NC Ext. Service)
  • New programs – EMS templates for animal Agriculture/National Egg Producers, NBP,
cooperators on demonstration farms told us
Cooperators on Demonstration Farms Told Us…
  • It’s a lot of work - Effort (annual)
    • Approximately 40 contact hours
    • Approximately 200 hours of Homework
  • Incentives greatly appreciated
    • Grant of up to $3,000.00
    • EMS plan recognized by water quality agency and some local insurance agencies
  • Benefits are real
    • Improved financials
    • Get to know agency personnel better/mutual respect developed
  • EMS Manual (English and Spanish versions)
  • Speakers Bureau
  • Credible Advocates in Farm Community
aspects and impacts
Aspects and Impacts
  • Considered:
    • Air emissions (dust and odor)
    • Solid/hazardous waste/sharps/light bulbs
    • Impact on land
    • Vehicle issues – live haul, fuel and feed deliveries
    • Water use and effluent generation
    • Land use, energy use, water use
    • Raw material and resource use
    • Positive environmental issues
significance scoring prioritize
Significance Scoring --Prioritize
  • Environmental Concerns such as:
    • regulatory/legal exposure
    • health risk/people
    • resource conservation
  • Business Concerns such as:
    • effect on the public image/community
    • cost savings/costs deferred
    • cost recovery period
    • equipment/facility
      • Feed systems
      • Water system
significance scoring cont
Significance Scoring (cont.)
  • Considered ranking issues such as:
    • scale of impact
    • duration of impact
    • zone of impact
    • probability of occurrence or likelihood - frequent, likely, possible, rarely, unlikely
    • severity of impact - catastrophic, severe, moderate, minor
and the winning aspect impacts were
…And the winning Aspect-impacts were
  • Waste management
  • Mortality management
  • Feed system management
  • Watering system
ems example
  • Policy : reduce the environmental impact of the operation
  • Objective: Improve feed handling facilities to minimize spills
  • Target : Reduce feed spills by 95% by mid 2002.
  • Set Environmental Mgmt. Program

EPA Onsite and Decentralized Web Site

emerging opportunities
Emerging Opportunities
  • Community-wide programs
    • Water systems
    • Stormwater
    • Onsite wastewater systems
    • Planning agencies
    • Biosolids
  • Federal facilities
Integrated Operations

On Farm

Local Interest

Round 2 began

Better business sense


Emerging management model

Federal/state/local facilities



For More InformationRobert Rubin, NCSU – BAEBeth Graves, NCDENR, DPPEAJamie Ragan, NCDENR, and