conservation Archive

The situation in Flint, Michigan has rightly has put a spotlight on the deplorable state of drinking water in America. Water pollution in the U.S. from agriculture is also a big problem getting bigger. From Toledo to Des Moines, municipal water systems are being overwhelmed trying to filter out farm pollutants. The residents of Adrian, Minnesota...
Bad policy, politics and greed are big contributors to our current clean water woes. But as consumers we contribute, too. Farmers and food companies do response to demand. We’re the ones eating all that cheap meat after all. How effective would it be to slap this on billboards and buses in Toledo? The idea would...
There have been rumors of the demise of the farm lobby’s power. But recent events with agriculture check-offs suggest otherwise. Check-offs are government monitored promotion programs that siphon off money from farmers to pay for marketing and research. They are the money machine behind much of the ag and food sector’s marketing appeals, and sometimes sketchier efforts....
There’s a growing public fight brewing over industrial agriculture’s water pollution. The most prominent scuffle is the Environmental Protection Agency’s highly contentious Waters of the US rule. At the local level much of the heat is centered on the recent lawsuit filed by the Des Moines’ Water Works over fertilizer derived nitrate run-off. Minnesota...
The 114th Congress has convened and the agriculture committee membership has been set. It’s a little-known fact is that the federal farm bill – drafted by the agriculture committees — represents the single largest U.S taxpayer investment in the environment, with $39 billion spent on agriculture-related conservation programs from 1995-2012. The conservation programs authorized...
Lawmakers could stem the growth of our largest dead zone with their votes. But most refuse to. Agriculture field run-off is the main contributor to the Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone, an oxygen-deprived swath of ocean the size of Connecticut. Fertilizer from farms throughout the Midwest washes into the Mississippi River and eventually makes its...
Lead by the American Farm Bureau Federation, the agriculture lobby  has relentlessly pushed back against new Environmental Protection Agency proposed rules for improving U.S. water quality. Through their “ditch the rule” campaign the AFBF has spent lavishly on PR, intensely lobbied Congress, mobilized their vast membership, and joined forces with big-time polluters in opposition to...
The recent campaign against Environmental Protection Agency clean water rule proposals has descended into farce, courtesy of the American Petroleum Institute and the federal ethanol mandate. The issue of ethanol subsidies and mandates has generated opposition coalitions comprised of some pretty “strange bedfellows.” With ethanol’s threat to fossil fuel’s market share, its impact on livestock...