Cow flatulence tax nothing but hot air

Jan. 15, 2009 at 3:27 PM

EL PASO, Texas, Jan. 15 (UPI) -- Rumors that livestock owners throughout the United States could be taxed for their animals' gas emissions are completely untrue, a federal official says.

Environmental Protection Agency spokesman Jonathon Shradar confirmed the federal agency has no plans to begin taxing farm owners like Joe Gonzalez for the flatulence of their herds, KFOX-TV, El Paso, Texas, reported Wednesday.

But Gonzales, who owns Gonzalez Dairy Farm, Inc., remains concerned that he could face additional payments in the future for his animals' instinctual activities.

"When I first heard it, I thought it was ridiculous thing to try and tax cows for doing what they do naturally. Which is eat, feed, produce milk, and have by-pass products," he told KFOX.

"It would take away 80 percent of my net profit per cow. So, instead of making $216 per cow, it would bring me down to $40 a cow, and of course that would hurt everything else in my income stream," he added.

Shradar told KFOX the EPA report spurring on such rumors is actually based on air pollution sources outside of animal flatulence.

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