Conservation, Energy & Environment


Senate Committee Adopts Ag Spending Bill

July 15, 2010

On Thursday, July 15, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved the Fiscal Year 2011 Agricultural Appropriations bill by voice vote.  The action on the agriculture bill came after a lengthy partisan debate over the overall discretionary spending levels for the entire government for FY 2011, which concluded with the adoption of Chairman Inouye’s proposed spending allocations. […]

Child Nutrition with Farm to School Passes House Committee

July 15, 2010

On Thursday, July 15, the House Education and Labor Committee approved the child nutrition reauthorization bill authored by Chairman George Miller (D-CA) (Improving Nutrition for America’s Children Act, H.R. 5504) by a vote of 32 -13 with Republicans Todd Platts (PA), Michael Castle (DE), and Vernon Ehlers (MI) joining all of the Democratic members of […]

USDA Awards Wetland Enhancement Projects

July 15, 2010

On July 12, David White, Chief of the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), announced 5 projects approved to receive funding through the Wetlands Reserve Enhancement Program (WREP). Under the Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP), the USDA purchases long-term or permanent easements to restore, protect and enhance wetland values and functions on  wetland that has been in […]

FSA Programs Get USDA Push

July 15, 2010

USDA’s Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative recently highlighted Farm Service Agency (FSA) resources that can be used to expand and diversify farm businesses, preserve natural resources critical to future farm income and create links with local and regional food systems. The Farm Storage Facility Loan program was expanded by the 2008 Farm Bill […]

Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative Awards

July 12, 2010

On Friday, July 9, USDA announced the award of $6.6 million in FY2010 conservation funding for 26 Conservation Cooperative Partnership Initiative (CCPI) projects  in 15 states.   In addition, 4 projects were awarded $1.3 million under the special Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative of the CCPI. The CCPI supports special state and regional conservation projects that […]

USDA Program for Voluntary Public Access on Farm, Ranch & Forest Land

July 8, 2010

Program Interim Rule On Thursday, July 8, USDA issued an interim rule for the Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program (VPA-HIP), which was established in the 2008 Farm Bill.  The Farm Bill authorizes $50 million in funding for the Program through FY 2012.  The basic goal of the program is to increase public access […]

California Bans Battery Cage Eggs As of 2015

July 8, 2010

The State of California will end the sale of eggs from out-of-state battery cage facilities beginning January 1, 2015. On Tuesday, July 6, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law Assembly Bill No. 1437, which requires all sales in California of shell (whole) eggs for human consumption to comply with the state’s Prevention of Farm Animal […]

Say It Ain’t So Mr. Secretary!

July 2, 2010

One day.  Two House of Representatives hearings.  USDA schizophrenia. That is one of the story lines from Thursday, July 1. See here and here for  our earlier posts on Thursday’s Child Nutrition hearing and Conservation Program hearing. But now for the bigger, underlying story. The Child Nutrition Reauthorization bill needs to pass and needs to […]

House Subcommittee Hearing Reviews Conservation Technical Assistance

July 2, 2010

On Thursday, July 1, the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy and Research held a hearing to review the administration and delivery of conservation programs. Subcommittee Chairman Tim Holden (D-PA) emphasized the importance of accessible and efficient technical assistance for proper land management and implementation of conservation practices. According to the testimony from Steve […]

Ohio Agrees to Improve Farm Animal Welfare

July 2, 2010

On Wednesday, June 30, Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, the Ohio Farm Bureau, Ohioans for Humane Farms, The Humane Society of the United States, and other parties announced a landmark farm animal welfare agreement.  This announcement came on the day that animal welfare activists were poised to submit 500,000 signatures to the Ohio Secretary of State […]

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