Agricultural Producers have been diligent in finding solutions for restricting
livestock waste from entering the waters of the State. As Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
regulatory standards tighten, the Dakota West RC&D (Dickinson) and Dakota Prairies RC&D (Bismarck)
are building partnerships to assist livestock producers in their quest to find solutions
for managing livestock waste in affordable and environmentally sound ways.
Through these partnerships the Livestock Facilities Assistance Program (LFAP) was developed.
The goal of the program is to assist agricultural producers throughout the 18 county program area
in south central/south western North Dakota to address issues associated
with livestock manure runoff in lakes and streams by delivering timely engineering services for
the design and construction oversight of livestock manure management systems.
Dakota West RC&D and Dakota Prairies RC&D are 501©(3) nonprofit organizations.
The RC&Ds obtain grant funds and administer them to organizations throughout their constituency
areas for community development and conservation of natural resources. The RC&Ds partnered with
NDSU Extension Service, the Dickinson Research Extension Center, Soil Conservation Districts,
Water Resource Districts, County Commissions, and NRCS to provide financial and technical
resources for the LFAP program.
The livestock inventory for North Dakota indicates that there were 1,880,000 head
of cattle as of January 1, 2003. Of this amount, 908,000 (48%) were in the 18-county LFAP
project area (North Dakota Agriculture, Ag Statistics No. 72, June 2003).
With stricter EPA and State regulatory standards giving directive that livestock operations will
not be allowed to pollute waters of the State, the need to assist agricultural producers to
address ag waste management issues is tremendous.
EPA 319 grant funds were obtained by Dakota West RC&D and Dakota Prairies RC&D in December, 2001,
for engineering assistance. This project has been highly successful and the RC&D Councils
were awarded additional EPA 319 and State Water Commission grant funds in 2004 and 2005
to continue the project and expand staff to include both a full-time engineer and a full-time
Dakota Prairies RC&D and Dakota West RC&D formed a joint committee consisting of two members
from each RC&D Council. This committee establishes policies and procedures and provides general