September 16, 2013

Although environmental regulations by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that lead to less agricultural runoff into the Chesapeake Bay watershed seem like a win for everybody [“Judge upholds EPA plan,” Metro, Sept. 14], there are economic repercussions that the EPA and Judge Sylvia H. Rambo overlooked when approving the plan.

Farmers argue that they cannot afford to put in place the new conservation upgrades, which include fences to prevent cattle from wading into streams and sheds to store animal waste. Small farmers should be given assistance by the state or the EPA.

No one can dispute the importance of keeping the Chesapeake Bay watershed clean and free of agricultural and nutrient runoff, but one should not harm small farmers in doing so.

Alexandra Melinchok, Silver Spring