America's wetlands and prairies are being lost and our drinking water and food supplies are contaminated with toxic pesticides, fertilizers, hormones and antibiotics. The productivity of our farmland is being depleted, threatening future generations of farmers.
Many farmers are producing food in ways that protect family farms and the environment. But farm policies are doing too little to reward good stewardship and too much to underwrite unsustainable crop and animal production by the largest and most successful farm businesses.
The federal government paid out $11.3 million in taxpayer-funded farm subsidies to 50 billionaires or farm businesses in which they had an interest between 1995 and 2012, and changes to the farm bill being weighed by Congress could well increase their take.Read More
Seven U.S. senators last week called for re-linking the federal crop insurance program to conservation compliance during a House-Senate conference committee meeting on the 2013 farm bill. The ranking member of the House Agriculture Committee also endorsed the linkage.Read More
Check out the outrageous stats on their cards below to learn more about America’s Subsidy All Stars. And to see which ones are catching subsidies on a field near you, explore EWG’s map of subsidy millionaires the whopping 174 counties where these 26 All Stars have home field advantage.Read More
“Subsidy millionaires” are not your typical family farmers. They are individuals who each year collect more than $1 million each in crop insurance subsidies from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.Read More
Hundreds of millions of conservation dollars in the federal farm bill should be used more effectively to address widespread water pollution problems in California, concludes a new report by Environmental Working Group.
Both the House and Senate overwhelmingly have voted for farm subsidy reform. The Senate twice voted to subject recipients of crop insurance subsidies to a modest means test, and the House passed a resolution supporting the same proposal. And polls show that Americans overwhelmingly support reasonable limits on farm subsidies. Even rural voters think too many subsidies go to big farmers.Read More
Many California farmers produce food in ways that protect public health and the environment, but too many others use practices that take a serious toll on the state’s water resources. A slew of agricultural pollutants, including fertilizers, pesticides, pathogens and sediment, are seriously damaging California’s surface and ground water, poisoning fish and threatening drinking water for many communities.Read More
Last month, the National Wildlife Federation reported that more than 398,000 acres – 620 square miles – of grasslands, forests and other land were plowed, cleared or otherwise converted to grow crops over a 12-month period from 2011 to 2012.Read More
Today, officials at the USDA will don their Santa Claus outfits a few months early and disburse almost $5 billion dollars in direct payment farm subsidies to landowners across the country.Read More
Doesn’t it make sense to subject some of the richest farmers to a means test when they seek federal subsidies to pay for their crop insurance?Read More
The pending Senate version of the farm bill includes a provision to relink conservation compliance with crop insurance subsidies. Chairman Lucas’s competing House version does not.Read More
Environmental Working Group (EWG) released the following statement in response to the sense of the House resolution passed by the U.S. House of Representative to instruct the farm bill conference committee to accept a Senate provision that would reduce crop insurance premium subsidies to farm operators annually earning more than $750,000 in adjusted gross income.Read More
A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report released Tuesday (Oct. 8) found that of the $1.5 billion in farm subsidies doled out in 2012 to people who were supposedly “actively engaged” in farming, nearly half went to individuals who wouldn’t know how to steer a tractor or run a combine.Read More
A proposed supplemental crop insurance program included in the pending farm bills in both the House and Senate would have boosted windfall profits for farm businesses and increased federally subsidized insurance payouts by $6.8 billion in 2012, according to a new report released today by Environmental Working Group (EWG).Read More
Even if the government miraculously opens for business tomorrow, several critically important USDA conservation and nutrition programs will be shuttered.Read More