WASHINTON — Editor’s note: The below statements were released following the USDA’s announcement of the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities opportunity. You can find out more about this initiative in the USDA’s press release, here.
American Farm Bureau Federation:
Farm Bureau Commends New Climate-Smart Pilot Projects
American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall commented today on USDA’s announcement of the Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities pilot program.
“Farm Bureau commends efforts by USDA to address the challenges farmers and ranchers are facing in their attempts to adopt new and emerging climate-smart practices, as well as participate in developing climate marketing channels.
“Voluntary, incentive-based pilot projects are a great first step to identify barriers and ensure farmers and ranchers of all sizes can participate no matter where they are located or what they produce. We look forward to working with the administration, Congress and our members to develop bipartisan solutions that provide adequate CCC funding while also ensuring the longevity of programs that build on our longstanding commitment to sustainability.”
National Farmers Union:
NFU OFFERS SUPPORT FOR NEW USDA “PARTNERSHIPS FOR CLIMATE-SMART COMMODITIES”
Calls pilot projects a “key step” in helping farmers and ranchers be part of the climate solution
Today, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack unveiled a new opportunity that will support farmers and ranchers in their efforts to fight climate change. The Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities will fund pilot projects to accelerate the role farmers and ranchers play in providing climate solutions.
In comments submitted to USDA in November, National Farmers Union stressed the importance of a national, broadly inclusive initiative in terms of geography and scale of production, and that participation by limited resource, beginning, and social disadvantaged farmers and ranchers should be encouraged.
“NFU has long called for bold and cooperative action to rein in the climate crisis, and this announcement marks a key step in helping farmers and ranchers be part of the solution,” said Rob Larew, President, National Farmers Union.
“We appreciate that the climate-smart commodities opportunity is designed to be inclusive, collaborative, and focused on voluntary, incentive-based practices and approaches to conservation,” added Larew. “NFU is hopeful these pilot projects will help develop new market opportunities for farmers, and we stand ready to work with the administration to ensure the pilot projects are successful.”
More information on the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities can be found here.
Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance (FACA):
FACA Applauds USDA Investment in Climate-Smart Pilot Projects
The more than 80 member organizations of the Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance (FACA) strongly commend USDA for advancing a voluntary, incentive-based approach to deploy climate-smart practices on working lands through its Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities.
Members of the Alliance welcome USDA’s plan to partner with farmers, ranchers, forest owners and nongovernmental organizations through pilot projects and are pleased to see the program structured in a manner consistent with FACA recommendations. We share Secretary Vilsack’s optimism that this approach will support climate-smart commodities while unlocking new market opportunities and we believe it will build confidence in the climate benefits of advanced farming and forestry practices.
FACA stressed in previous comments submitted to USDA the importance of building flexibility into the initiative to acknowledge that agriculture and forestry look very different in different regions, and we’re pleased USDA’s plan appears to welcome a diversity of practices and approaches. We also asked USDA to include a plan for engaging and enrolling Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) and small farmers, ranchers, and forest owners in the project, which the initiative has prioritized.
FACA members look forward to contributing to proposals that meet the requirements of the CSAF to demonstrate the impact of voluntary, incentive-based programs. We will continue to engage with the Administration and Congress to advance bipartisan solutions to address climate challenges that abide by the alliance’s principles and recommendations.
National Milk Producers Federation:
NMPF Commends USDA Leadership on Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities
From NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern:
“We applaud Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and his team at USDA for working to fashion the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities initiative in a way that will provide significant opportunities for U.S. dairy producers of all sizes to build on their proactive sustainability work. This new initiative will support voluntary, producer-led efforts to increase on-farm adoption of climate smart agricultural technologies and practices. Such efforts are essential to help U.S. dairy farmers fulfill their environmental stewardship goals to become greenhouse gas neutral or better by 2050 and improve water quality while optimizing water use.
“NMPF looks forward to working with USDA to make this program a success —and a springboard for additional achievements.”
American Soybean Association:
U.S. Soybean Farmers Weigh in on Vilsack’s Rural Climate Initiative
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced a new $1 billion investment in partnerships that support climate-smart farming, ranching and forestry practices and that expand market opportunities for those climate-smart commodities to increase their competitive edge.
The American Soybean Association was engaged in that program announcement on Monday.
“ASA appreciates USDA’s announcement of the new Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities initiative, which we hope will help soy farmers throughout the country and the agricultural value chain to address climate change,” said Brad Doyle, ASA President and Arkansas soy grower. “America’s soybean farmers welcome opportunities to grow sustainable markets for their crops, including as food, feed, biofuels, and other biobased goods, and through export programs like the Soy Sustainability Assurance Protocol. Unlocking a new climate-smart commodity marketplace is a positive next step for our industry, and we are pleased to see what innovations this pilot program delivers.”
ASA commented on the early stages of the partnership program in November. As soy growers learn more about these new revenue stream opportunities, ASA reiterates that the industry has established long-term goals for sustainability, and soybean farmers work day to day through good farming practices to do their part and remain committed to the environment.