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Environment & Agriculture >> Air Quality
Air emissions from confined animal feeding operations may include a toxic mixture of contaminants, such as hydrogen sulfide, particulate matter from decaying fecal waste, odors, microbes and toxins. These pollutants can pose a serious health risk to vulnerable populations. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in pesticides contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, which can harm human health and plant life.
Recommended resources on this topic:
Reports & Other Documents
Hazardous Pollution from Factory Farms: An Analysis of EPA’s National Air Emissions Monitoring Study Data
Environmental Integrity Project, March 2011.
Regulations for AFOs Related to Air Programs (EPA)
Air Quality Issues and Animal Agriculture: A Primer
Congressional Research Service Report for Congress, February 2006.
Peer-reviewed Journal Articles
Does Animal Feeding Operation Pollution Hurt Public Health? A National Longitudinal Study of Health Externalities Identified by Geographic Shifts in Livestock Production
S. Sneeringer. Amer J Agr Econ, February 2009.
Concentrations of bioaerosols, odors, and hydrogen sulfide inside and downwind from two types of swine livestock operations.
P. S. Thorne, et al. J Occup Environ Hyg, 2009.
Health effects of airborne exposures from concentrated animal feeding operations.
D. Heederik, et al. Environ Health Perspect, February 2007.
Environmental Protection Agency
Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA)
California Department of Pesticide Regulation
Additional Tools & Resources
Animal Agriculture and Air Quality website (Iowa State)
Manure Management and Air Quality website (University of Minnesota)
Purdue Agricultural Air Quality Laboratory
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