May 2, 2011
Think this might be a good time to cut spending on soil conservation?
The New York Times recently reported that higher prices for corn and soy coupled with severe storms fueled by climate change were producing unsustainable levels of soil erosion in Iowa and other Corn Belt states. That same week Congress approved a budget deal that cut $500 million from the 2011 budget from programs that help farmers conserve natural resources.
The 2012 budget outlook for programs like the Conservation Stewardship Program, Environmental Quality Incentives Program, and Wetlands Reserve Program is looking even more grim. The President‘s 2012 budget proposes an immediate $1 billion cut, and sets the stage for permanent cuts of $5 billion to conservation in the 2012 Farm Bill.
Enough! These are false budget savings that endanger the nation’s soil and water. These resources form the very foundation of our rural economies. The long-term costs of these cuts far outweigh our modest investment in soil conservation.
Congress is about to make decisions on fiscal year 2012 funding priorities. Your Senators and Representative need to hear what you think.
Calling is easy. To find contact information for your Senators and Congressman go to Congress.org and type in your zip code. Click on the legislator’s name and then on the contact tab. You can also call the capital switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to be connected to their office. Ask for his/her aide responsible for agricultural appropriations. If the aid is unavailable leave a voice mail or a message with the receptionist.
The message is simple: We can’t afford any more cuts to agricultural conservation programs. The long-term costs of unsustainable soil erosion to our economy far outweigh our modest investments in conservation. Do not cut funds authorized in the 2008 Farm Bill for conservation on farms and ranches.
Your call is important. Thank you for making a call to protect our soil and water.
Click here to learn more about conservation programs on the NSAC website.