Farm bill, with biogas permit changes, heads to Cooper

North Carolina General Assembly

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina General Assembly’s annual farm bill has received final legislative approval.

The Senate voted on Tuesday for House changes to the measure and sent the bill on to Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s desk.

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The most contentious provision left in the final measure directs state environmental regulators to develop a “general permit” for animal farm operations that want to collect methane gas from waste ponds for energy.

The permit would created a streamlined process for such systems.

Environmental groups and some residents in hog-intensive areas oppose the provision.

The groups urged Cooper to veto the bill.