LIVESTOCK MANURE & MORTALITIES
MANAGEMENT REGULATION M.R. 42/98
UNDER THE ENVIRONMENT ACT
formerly The Livestock Waste Regulation M.R. 81/94
AN OVERVIEW OF REGULATORY CHANGES including:
A ban on winter spreading of manure for large scale producers.
Enforceable limits on the amount of manure that can be spread on
Manure Management Plans required for large scale producers.
Permit required for all manure storage facilities prior to
The Livestock Manure and Mortalities Management
Regulation provides legislative standards towards proper
management of manure and mortalities, benefitting the producer by:
- minimizing the potential for contamination of the production
- reintroducing important nutrients to the soil;
- protecting the environment for the producer and the community.
This revised regulation has been introduced to
reflect changes in the livestock industry. The intent of the
regulation is: to strengthen protection of the environment, to enhance
enforcement capabilities and to ensure that livestock production will
The key areas of the regulation address:
- safe storage of manure
- safe application of manure as fertilizer
- transportation of manure
- dealing with livestock mortalities
- innovative practices
It is important that all manure be contained and
stored safety to prevent leakage into groundwater or streams, lakes
and other surface waters.
All new or modified manure storage facilities now
require a permit from Manitoba Environment prior to construction.
Before they can be used, the structures must be
certified by an engineer as being constructed according to siting
requirements and engineering design standards. This regulation now
covers all earthen, concrete and steel storage facilities.
Regulations now require that:
- new manure storages, confined livestock areas and composting
facilities be at least 100 metres from property boundaries,
surface water courses, sinkholes, wells and springs;
- there is no discharge of livestock manure into surface or ground
- manure not be permitted to escape property boundaries either
during storage or application.
Spreading of manure on fields by large scale
livestock operations is now banned from November 10 until April 15. This
will reduce the amount of nutrients such as phosphorus and nitrogen
that may run off frozen soils during spring melt, polluting nearby
lakes and streams. Livestock operations with fewer than 400 Animal
Units of any one type of livestock are exempt unless their manure
management practices are causing environmental problems. In the event
of emergency circumstances (i.e. excessive rain), an operator may
apply, prior to application, to Manitoba Environment for an exemption
to this ban.
Existing large scale producers have until November
1, 2003 to comply. New large scale producers must comply as they come
into production. Manitoba Agriculture representatives can assist
livestock producers in determining the number of Animal Units in their
One Animal Unit = number of animals of a particular
kind which produce 73 kilograms of nitrogen in 12 months.
400 Animal Units =
- =320 sows (farrow to finish)
- = 200 dairy cows
- = 332 beef cattle
- = 40,000 laying hens
Manure Management Plans
The annual preparation and registration of Manure
Management Plans by large scale producers ensures that adequate land
is available for fertilization with manure and that environmentally
sensitive areas can be identified and protected. These plans describe
the volume and nitrogen content of the manure produced and the
existing nitrogen levels in the soil. They will also indicate how,
when and where the manure will be applied.
The deadline for filing first plans is January 1,
1999 for new operations and November 10, 1999 for existing operations.
Manitoba Agriculture staff can assist with the
preparation of these plans. Manitoba Environment will review the plans
to ensure they are environmentally sound.
Persons transporting livestock manure must ensure
manure does not spill from the vehicle on to a public road. If
a spill does occur, they must immediately report the spill especially
if the location or quantity involved could have a negative effect on
Any series of preventable, small spillages on roads
are also prohibited and must be reported. Minor spills (less than 50
litres of liquid manure or 0.25m3 of solid manure) or
spills in locations that do not pose a significant threat or risk to
the environment do not need to be reported.
This regulation provides for proper disposal of
livestock carcasses by rendering, composting, incineration or burial
where environmental conditions are suitable. Mortalities must be
stored in a secure manner and must be kept in either a refrigerated or
frozen state if retained for more than 48 hours before disposal.
The new Livestock Manure and Mortalities Management
Regulation recognizes that considerable research and innovation is
occurring in the field of livestock production and that technological
advancements are occurring at a rapid rate.
For this reason, the requirements of the regulation
may be varied where innovative and environmentally sound practices or
procedures are proposed. This ensures that livestock producers in
Manitoba will continue to be world leaders by being able to adopt new
acceptable practices as soon as they become available.
Manitoba Environment has made the Livestock Manure
and Mortalities Management Regulation a top priority for the
department. Protocols are being developed to address new obligations
in areas such as:
- the review of engineering design for new manure storage
- the inspection of manure storage facilities under construction,
- and the review and registration of Manure Management Plans.
Protection of the environment and compliance with
the regulation are priority goals for the department. These goals will
continue to be achieved by:
- conducting regular inspections of livestock operations,
- responding to complaints,
- providing education opportunities via public meetings, Open
Houses and similar venues,
- conducting monitoring programs,
- assisting research efforts,
- ensuring that manure storage facilities are properly designed
- and any other actions necessary to fully enforce the
requirements of the Livestock Manure and Mortalities Management
DEALING WITH OFFENCES
Manitoba Environment is committed to strong
enforcement of the Livestock Manure and Mortalities Management
Regulation. However, enforcement action includes much more than
prosecution. Clean-up of problem areas and modification of
environmentally unsound practices may be achieved by the issuance of
an Environment Officer’s Order or by a Director’s Order.
Formal warnings may be issued along with an Order
for minor infractions by a first time offender. Common Offence
Notices, a less formal method of prosecution (similar to a traffic
ticket), may be issued for more serious infractions while prosecution
via formal Laying of Information may be reserved for complex offenses
or for repeat offenders.
QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Why are odours not addressed under this regulation?
Odours are regulated under the Farm Practices
Protection Act. Questions and complaints about odours from livestock
operations may be directed to the Farm Practices Protection Board at
Is the 400 animal unit calculation cumulative across types of
Calculating the 400 animal unit number will be
category specific and will not be cumulative across types of
livestock. This means, for example, that animal units for mixed farms
will not be calculated by adding the animal units for hogs to that of
poultry and beef cattle. Each will be calculated as separate entities.
Why are phosphorus concentrations in manure not included under this
Agricultural soils in Manitoba tend to be alkaline
(ie. high pH) and therefore tend to tightly bind phosphorus. Hence,
the phosphorus content of manure that has been applied at a rate
meeting crop nitrogen requirements, poses less of an environmental
risk to lakes and streams in Manitoba.
Why are nitrates controlled under this regulation?
Nitrates are very soluble in water and therefore
can easily enter and contaminate surface and ground water. Elevated
nitrate levels in water used for drinking may pose a health risk to
Why are livestock operations with less than 400
animal units exempt from the ban on winter spreading of
Smaller scale operations tend to be family farms
that pose less overall risk to the environment than large, intensive
livestock operations. However, livestock operations that are otherwise
exempt under this ban will still have to meet minimum setback distance
requirements from sensitive areas such as watercourses, wells,
sinkholes and springs. Additionally, other sections of the regulations
such as limitations on nitrate concentrations in soils and a
prohibition on the escape of manure from the property boundaries of
land where it is either stored or applied as a fertilizer continue to
Co-Ordination of Environmental Livestock Program
Unit 5, 284 Reimer Avenue
Steinbach MB R0A 2T3
PH: (204) 346-6060
Fax: (204) 326-2472