May 29, 2012
Congress must demand a higher return for the environment in exchange for our more than $8 billion annual investment in agricultural subsidies. Maintaining the status quo is a risky over-reliance on largely voluntary measures that have and will fall short of keeping our waters clean.”
Agricultural pollution is a top cause of degraded rivers and lakes, and the federal government currently invests more than $8 billion annually in agricultural subsidies. Stacy James, Water Resources Scientist, wrote a letter to the editor in response to a Chicago Tribune editorial. Stacy’s letter calls for crop insurance subsidies to be linked to land-stewardship standards, particularly those that reduce pollution and erosion. Many farmers are already doing their part, thanks to a provision in the 1985 Farm Bill that requires farmers to reduce erosion and preserve wetlands in order to receive certain subsidies.