HomeNewsFederal Government to Spend $1 Billion for Farmers and Ranchers to Fight Against Climate Change

Federal Government to Spend $1 Billion for Farmers and Ranchers to Fight Against Climate Change

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

The U.S. federal government is reportedly set to spend $1 billion for farmers and ranchers to fight against climate change.

According to CNBC, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary, Tom Vilsack, revealed on Monday (February 7th) that the organization will spend the funds on projects specifically for farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners to use practices that “curb” climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions.

The media outlet also reports that the $1 billion investment comes just after President Biden asked the U.S. farmers to lead the way in offsetting emissions. The world leader also pledged to slash emissions from the agriculture sector in half by 2030. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) observes that the agriculture sector accounts for more than 10% of U.S. emissions. The agency notes that public and private entities may apply for grants from $5 million to $100 million. This includes state, local, and tribal governments; nonprofits; small businesses; and colleges. 

Vilsack stated that farmers have endured major losses from worsening floods, storms, and droughts caused by climate change. “They’ve seen it. They feel it. And they’ve been hurt by it. We’re trying to incentivize the creation of climate-smart commodities that hold higher value in the marketplace that farmers may generate additional profit from.”

Vilsack also explained that the funds for farmers and ranchers are about creating domestic markets that will provide American agriculture and forestry with the resources to what they know to do best. “To feed the world, while serving as great stewards of our land and water.”

Vilsack noted that the USDA’s program will focus on projects that implement climate-friendly conservation practices as well. This includes no-till, cover crops, and rotational grazing, as well as measuring and monitoring greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural operations; and capturing and storing carbon. 

President Biden Tells Farmers They Have a Partner in the White House 

Last month, President Biden reassured farmers that they have a partner in the White House despite being reportedly one of the sectors that overwhelmingly voted against him. “This isn’t about Republicans or Democrats, red states or blue states. It’s about making sure that your contributions are recognized and your challenges are addressed,” the world leader declared in the video played at the American Farm Bureau Federation Convention in Atlanta. “Every day, you feed and fuel our country. I want you to know that every day – I mean this – every day you have a partner in the White House.”

Vilsack also spoke during the convention. “Our Chinese friends are about $16 billion light over what they committed to purchase,” he explained. U.S. Trade Representative, Katherine Tai, is notably continuing to converse with China about the necessity of living up “totally and completely” to phase one. This will be making up that $16 billion deficient over the course of several years. “We’re going to continue to press China on the need for complete enforcement and implementation of the trade agreement. Before we being the process of discussing the possibility of extensions.”