WASHINGTON — Editor’s note: The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 on Friday, August 12th, 2022. The below statements were issued by agricultural organizations following this announcement.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack
United State Department of Agriculture
Statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Passage of Inflation Reduction Act
“I want to thank Speaker Pelosi for leading the House in quick passage of the historic Inflation Reduction Act, putting rural America over special interests, and delivering a historic bill to President Biden’s desk.
“The Inflation Reduction Act will provide significant support for farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners as they care for our precious land, adapt and mitigate to climate change and ensure America remains a food secure nation. With historic investments in a clean energy economy, the Inflation Reduction Act will create good-paying jobs and more economic opportunity in rural communities across the country. Rural Americans will see lower utility bills and appreciate the fiscally responsible way the law lowers deficits. The Inflation Reduction Act will also lower costs for seniors, who make up a higher percentage of rural populations than more urban areas, by capping their annual out of pocket costs at the pharmacy and giving Medicare the power to negotiate drug prices.
“The Inflation Reduction Act builds on the Biden-Harris Administration’s historic investments in rural America and furthers the commitment to rural communities demonstrated in the American Rescue Plan and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The law is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to build critical infrastructure, to protect communities from wildfire and extreme heat and to drive climate-smart agriculture and renewable energy initiatives nationwide.
“President Biden knows that when rural communities succeed, America succeeds. I look forward to the President signing the Inflation Reduction Act, implementing its historic provisions at USDA, and investing a better future for rural America and all of America.”
National Farmers Union
NFU Statement on Passage of Inflation Reduction Act
National Farmers Union (NFU) President Rob Larew issued the following statement in response to the U.S. House of Representatives passing the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022:
“The passage of the Inflation Reduction Act is cause for optimism for farmers and ranchers across the country, with historic investments in voluntary, incentive-based conservation programs that are critically underfunded. NFU is proud to see investment in biofuels infrastructure that will help farmers’ bottom line and help consumers save at the pump. The inclusion of financial support for economically distressed farmers and ranchers is also a welcome addition that will help keep farmers on their land for years to come,” said NFU President Rob Larew.
“NFU thanks Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow, House Agriculture Committee Chair David Scott, and other allies for their work on this historic legislation and the inclusion of multiple NFU priorities in the final bill. We thank President Biden for his leadership in delivering this important legislative achievement for family farmers and ranchers and rural communities and look forward to him signing the bill into law and working with USDA to implement the bill,” Larew concluded.
As the Inflation Reduction Act was being considered, NFU distributed a letter of support to Congressional leadership urging for swift passage of the bill.
Land Trust Alliance
Land Trust Alliance Applauds Passage of Inflation Reduction Act
The Land Trust Alliance, a national land conservation organization working to save the places people need and love by strengthening land conservation across America, applauds passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).
The following statement can be attributed to Andrew Bowman, president and CEO of the Land Trust Alliance:
“The Land Trust Alliance is grateful to Congress for getting the IRA across the finish line and ensuring it includes $20 billion for Farm Bill conservation programs.
“The increase in funding of Farm Bill conservation programs is a clear acknowledgment of the critical role that private landowners will continue to play in addressing climate change and its impacts. This is an unprecedented investment in voluntary private land conservation and the work of land trusts across the country to protect our irreplaceable farmlands, forests, ranches and wetlands.”
Center for Rural Affairs
Center applauds Inflation Reduction Act’s investments in conservation, clean energy
In a win for rural communities, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 on Friday. Included in the package is funding for working lands conservation and investments in clean energy for rural communities.
“This package will positively impact rural people across the country,” said Johnathan Hladik, policy director for the Center for Rural Affairs.
Included in the Inflation Reduction Act is $3.25 billion for the Conservation Stewardship Program and $8.45 billion for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program through fiscal year 2026. This funding will provide farmers interested in implementing conservation practices a better chance at receiving funding.
“We know these working lands conservation programs have been severely underfunded and oversubscribed,” Hladik said. “This funding will address the backlog of farmers who have applied for financial assistance and not received a contract due to lack of program resources.”
The Inflation Reduction Act also provides significant investments in the energy sector by allocating roughly $30 billion in grant and loan programs for state and electric utilities to accelerate the transition to clean electricity. The package contains a special focus on rural electric cooperatives.
“These investments in localized, renewable energy will result in energy cost savings for consumers and increased reliability of the electricity sector,” Hladik said.