Valley ozone story takes off
Research by UC Davis scientists that revealed a substantial amount of San Joaquin Valley ozone is generated by animal feed is getting wide coverage in the news media. Google News reported 126 articles on the subject.
Many newspapers ran the Associated Press version of the story, written by Fresno-based Tracie Cone. She reported that the study — funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, California Air Resources Board and the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District — was initially intended to measure the impact of animal manure, urine and flatulence on ozone levels.
However, the researchers discovered that millions of tons of fermenting cattle feed bears greater responsibility.
Mark Grossi of the Fresno Bee noted in his story that the study was published last month in the journal Environmental Science & Technology. This week's flurry of interest was generated by an April 21 news feed from the American Chemical Society press office. ACS publishes the journal.In his story, Grossi wrote that the cattle feed explains only half of the Valley's ozone problem. The other half, Nitrogen oxide, or NOx, comes from vehicles. San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District believes NOx is more important to control, the Bee article said.
Meanwhile, Capital Press reported yesterday that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has rescinded its long-standing exemptions for agriculture under emission-control rules.
"Air quality in the San Joaquin Valley is consistently among the worst in the nation," said Deborah Jordan, director of the Air Division for the EPA's Pacific Southwest region, in a statement. "New and modified facilities will now be subject to the most stringent requirements, which will contribute to the health of our communities."/span>/span>
A dairy cow eats its rations.