Conservation, Energy & Environment


NSAC’s 2010 Policy Priorities

February 15, 2010

Each year, the NSAC membership engages in a set of discussions within NSAC’s four policy issue committees and then at our annual face-to-face meeting in January about the coming year’s policy priorities.  The NSAC Policy Council, made up of formally represented members, makes the final decision about the slate of issues the coalition will together […]

USDA Proposal for Biomass Crop Assistance Program Falls Far Short of Promoting Sustainable Bioenergy Production

February 10, 2010

This week USDA issued a proposed rule for the increasingly controversial Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP). The department will take public comments on the proposed rule until April 9, 2010. The 2008 Farm Bill and the accompanying Manager’s Statement clearly spells out BCAP’s primary focus: to promote the cultivation of perennial bioenergy crops that show […]

Farm and Conservation Groups Oppose Obama’s Proposed Farm Bill Cuts

February 5, 2010

In a February 5 letter to the House and Senate Agricultural Appropriations Subcommittees, farm, conservation and environmental groups urged Congress to reject President Obama’s proposed $1 billion-plus cut to mandatory farm conservation program funding.  The letter, coordinated by NSAC, was signed by 37 organizations including Audubon, Clean Water Network, Environmental Defense Fund, Izaak Walton League […]

2011 Budget Drill Down: EPA on Water and Air

February 2, 2010

This post is the third in a series of commentaries by NSAC staff on the President’s 2011 budget, released on February 1st. To read the overview by Executive Director Aimee Witteman click here. Look out in the following days for more budget analysis on research programs, conservation, rural programs and more. The proposed EPA budget […]

2011 Budget Drill Down: Biomass Crop Assistance Program

February 2, 2010

This post is the second in a series of commentaries by NSAC staff on the President’s 2011 budget, released on February 1st. To read the overview by Executive Director Aimee Witteman click here. Look out in the following days for more budget analysis on research programs, conservation, rural programs and more. The President’s 2011 budget […]

Obama Budget – Snapshot of Sustainable Agriculture

February 1, 2010

By Aimee Witteman Today, President Obama unveiled his $3.8 trillion budget for fiscal year 2011.  The big fat volumes with all of the program line items for each department of government were published online at the U.S. Government Printing Office this morning. This post summarizes just a few of the proposed losses and gains for […]

Important Update on NRCS High Tunnel Pilot Program

January 29, 2010

By Martha Noble, NSAC High tunnels help to extend the growing season for lettuce on Don Bustos’ Santa Cruz farm in Santa Fe, NM; Photo by Jess Daniel Update on Final Tally (February 2, 2010) The date for states to opt into the NRCS Seasonal High Tunnel Pilot Program closed on January 29 with 42 […]

2010 EQIP Organic Initiative Sign-up Announced

January 23, 2010

By Ariane Lotti, NSAC USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service has opened the 2010 sign-up for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program Organic Initiative. 2010 Organic Initiative Snapshot: $50 million has been allocated for 2010; The sign-up is open through March 12, 2010; Existing certified organic farmers and farmers transitioning to organic production are eligible; Applicants who […]

Updated Farm Bill Programs and Grants Page

January 22, 2010

By Jess Daniel, NSAC Introducing… an updated “quick-guide” to federal programs and grants for farmers, ranchers, food entrepreneurs, and the researchers, educators and community groups who serve them. This chart is a one-stop shop for links to the relevant USDA program websites (where they exist), brief descriptions of programs, and important dates and deadlines. Check […]

Kemp responds to comments on “BCAP Boondoggle”

January 20, 2010

By Loni Kemp, consultant to the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in response to a comment by  FSA employee Paul Harte on the article “BCAP Boondoggle” from January 11, 2010. Mr. Harte from USDA is quick to accuse, but the BCAP law is quite clear about where there is discretion that the Farm Service […]

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