EPA says Senate bill on climate change would help farmers more than initial studies showed
By Al Cross
New Environmental Protection Agency analysis shows higher and more widespread income potential for agriculture from climate-change legislation. Farmers could receive $1.2 billion of initial income benefits from the Senate bill and potentially $18 billion over time, Ken Anderson of Brownfield reports. The analysis, conducted by researchers from the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions at Duke University and AgriLife Research and Extension at Texas A&M University, contradicts earlier analysis done by the Agriculture and Food Policy Center, also at Texas A&M.
EPA’s new analysis says the vast majority of producers across the country, including crop and livestock, should benefit from the Senate bill. The earlier analysis said two-thirds of farms would decreasing cash reserves under the House climate bill, Anderson reports, but “EPA says the new analysis used a model that considered potential revenue from the sale of offsets and producer response to changing input costs.” (Read more)
Despite growing belief that the bill won’t pass this year, President Obama and Senate Democrats expressed the need for new urgency in addressing climate change Tuesday. The president and Vice President Biden, appearing at “green” events in Florida and Michigan yesterday, both spoke of the potential for alternative energy to create jobs, John M. Broder of The New York Times reports. Five senior administration officials also spoke yesterday to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in support of a climate-change bill. Obama told the crowd in Florida: “At this moment, there’s something big happening in America, when it comes to creating a clean-energy economy. But getting there will take a few more days like this one, and more projects like this one.” (Read more)
Reprinted with permission from The Rural Blog. Al Cross, former Courier-Journal political writer, is director of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues and The Rural Blog.