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The Issue

Conservation

Farms and ranches cover more than half of all land in the United States. EWG works to keep the land productive and to protect soil, water and wildlife.

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The Latest on Conservation

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

In 2013, an Environmental Working Group report titled “WASHOUT” documented that soil erosion across Iowa farm land during that spring’s heavy rains had been far worse than previous estimates – in some cases carrying away a devastating 40 tons of soil in a single week from fragile and poorly protected fields. In many places, runoff carved “ephemeral gullies” as a result of growers’ inadequate conservation measures.

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Reports & Consumer Guides
Thursday, July 31, 2014

This week (July 29), the White House released its list of “Champions of Change” in agriculture, 17 people who “are doing extraordinary things to build the bench for the next generation of farming and ranching.”

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AgMag
Blog Post
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Next Tuesday (Aug. 5), Missourians will decide if their state constitution should be amended to enshrine a so-called “Right-to-Farm” provision. The vaguely worded and open-ended amendment states, “the right of farmers and ranchers to engage in farming and ranching practices shall be forever guaranteed in this state.”

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AgMag
Blog Post
Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A new study from the University of Minnesota confirms what we’ve been saying – big agriculture is contaminating your drinking water.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Corn is in the food we eat, the soda we drink, the gas we buy, plastics, cleaners – it’s everywhere.

Producing all that corn is a $1.7 trillion industry in the United States, and as a new report documents, it’s one that takes a tremendous toll on the environment and is under threat from water shortages and climate change. But federal policies continue to encourage corn growers and corn-based industries to stay on an unsustainable course.  

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AgMag
Blog Post
Wednesday, June 11, 2014

When people think about the causes of global warming, the food they eat typically doesn’t make the short list. But agriculture is responsible for 80 percent of human-caused emissions of nitrous oxide, which is a greenhouse gas 300 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

And now a new study by researchers at Michigan State University shows that using more fertilizers than crops need is even more harmful to the climate than previous estimates indicated.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Monday, April 28, 2014

Although Minnesota has a unique policy designed to curb agricultural water pollution by requiring a 50-foot buffer zone between farmland and the state’s river and stream banks, less than a fifth of the waterways in the southern part of the state are fully protected, an Environmental Working Group report shows.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Saturday, April 26, 2014

Nearly 170 waterways in southern Minnesota get a grade of D or F because they lack the required protective strips of vegetation that prevent farm runoff from polluting nearby rivers and streams, according to a report card rating developed by Environmental Working Group.

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News Release
Friday, April 25, 2014

Water pollution from farmland is a major problem in southern Minnesota and wherever row crops dominate the landscape across the United States. Much of this pollution can be prevented by the conscientious use of riparian buffers – strips of grass, trees or other permanent vegetation maintained along the banks of rivers, streams, lakes and other waterways.

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Key Issues:
Reports & Consumer Guides
Friday, February 7, 2014

President Obama signed into law today a farm bill that is bad for taxpayers and bad for the environment, the Environmental Working Group said in a statement.

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News Release
Thursday, February 6, 2014

Building and operating the Keystone XL Pipeline would pump millions of tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. And as EWG’s Heather White has said, approving the pipeline would overlook a better choice – “investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency.”

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AgMag
Blog Post
Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The farm bill passed by Congress takes food and farm policy in the wrong direction. Here’s what others have to say about the bill.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Environmental Working Group (EWG) released the following statement in response to the passage of the farm bill in the Senate.

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News Release
Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The bill produced by the farm bill conference committee falls far short of the reforms needed to create a federal food and agricultural policy that can meet the challenges of the 21st century, the Environmental Working Group said today.

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News Release
Monday, January 27, 2014

EWG’s editors asked the entire staff to pick the top agriculture-related stories of 2013, a category that includes the farm bill, farm subsidies, crop insurance, conservation, genetically engineered crops and food and several other related topics.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Wednesday, January 15, 2014

A new Government Accountability Office report recommends that Congress and the Environmental Protection Agency should toughen the federal Clean Water Act’s approach to curbing pollution from agricultural runoff.

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Key Issues:
News Release
Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Obama Administration is ramping up efforts to link crop insurance subsidies with conservation requirements.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Thursday, November 21, 2013

There has long been bipartisan support for conservation compliance by farmers and politicians alike. Now more than ever, those leading the way in reauthorizing the farm bill may hear a growing number of prominent Republicans voicing their support to relink to crop insurance the vital conservation compact between taxpayers and farmers.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Dust storms have re-emerged across much of Kansas, Oklahoma, Colorado and Texas, fueled by the same combination of persistent drought, plowing up fragile land and poor public policy that led to the Dust Bowl years of the 1930s.

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AgMag
Blog Post
Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Every day, thousands of farmers take steps to reduce polluted runoff and restore wetlands and grasslands. Many more would help, but 40 percent of farmers have been turned away by the U.S. Department of Agriculture when they offer to share the cost of cleaner environment.

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Key Issues:
AgMag
Blog Post

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