Nutrient Management Plans

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Nutrient Management Plans

All newly licensed Grade A milk producers are required to have an approved Nutrient Management Plan (NMP) on site within six months of licensing, and a certifiedNMP on site within two years of licensing.

  • Approved means the local conservation district has determined that the operation's plan to manage nutrients meets all the elements identified on a checklist established by the Washington Conservation Commission.
  • Certified means the local conservation district has determined all plan elements are in place and implemented as described in the plan.  To be certified, both the dairy operator and an authorized representative of the local conservation district must sign the plan.
  • Dairy NMP Minimum Elements

CAFOs:  Beginning March 3, 2017, all permitted CAFO's, dairy and non-dairy, are required to have a Manure Pollution Prevention Plan (MPPP) that meets the CAFO permit requirements established by Ecology.   The MPPP requirements for the "Combined" CAFO permit (both surface and ground water protection) and for the "State Only" CAFO permit (ground water protection) are found in Section S4. of the permit.

All Dairies are required to have their Nutrient Management Plans and land application records on site.

Nutrient Management Plans (NMP) are developed to meet site-specific conditions of the dairy operation and to meet the requirements of Washington State's Dairy Nutrient Management Act. 

Each function of the dairy operation is evaluated  - production, collection, storage, transfer, treatment and use - is covered by the NMP.  The foundation of nutrient management is the agronomic use of the solid and liquid components of manure. 

The NMP provides the dairy manager with a suite of best management practices, that if followed, will help the dairy prevent pollution or degradation of waters of the state.

Objectives of the plan will include:

  • Preventing discharge of contaminated waste water to streams, drainage ditches, or other surface waters from the facility
  • Preventing migration of contaminants from the facility to the underlying aquifer
  • Using facility nutrients to supply crop nutrient needs at rates and times tailored to reach realistic yield goals.
  • Meeting the requirements of the Dairy Nutrient Management Act of 1998 (RCW 90.64), the Clean Water Act and compliance with Federal, State And local laws regarding water quality standards.

The term "waters of the State" is defined at RCW 90.48.020 which includes but is not limited to:

  • Lakes, rivers, ponds, streams, inland waters, underground waters, salt waters
  • All other surface waters and watercourses within the jurisdiction of the state of Washington.