EWG’s mission is to empower people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. In the Midwest we pursue our mission by working to move agriculture in a more sustainable direction. Farmland dominates the landscape and watersheds in the Midwest. The way that land is used and managed has profound effects on our health through the water we drink and the food we eat.
Farming can actually make water cleaner and the environment healthier. Farms doing exactly that are scattered across the Midwest. We bring a unique combination of remote-sensing, big data and landscape analysis to bear to build pressure to change policy to heal the damage done by poor farming practices and to build excitement about how much healthier the environment could be through often simple changes in the way we farm.
Between 2014 and 2015, three federal farm subsidy programs paid farmers multiple times for the same loss in crop yield or decline in crop price.Read More
Through federal farm programs, American taxpayers are routinely paying thousands of wealthy mega-farms twice for the same "loss," according to a new EWG report.Read More
After a decline in crop prices in 2014 and 2015, the U.S. Department of Agriculture boosted farmers' income by more than $13 billion through two newly enacted subsidy programs. But during the same period, another USDA program paid out nearly as much to “compensate” the same farmers for the same decline in prices. In all, this double-dipping cost American taxpayers almost $23.9 billion.Read More
During the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, the federal government planted 220 million trees to stop the blowing soil that devastated the Great Plains.Read More
Farming operations directly received more than $14 billion in taxpayer-funded commodity subsidies in 2015 and 2016, according to the latest analysis of U.S. Department of Agriculture data obtained by Environmental Working Group.Read More
Drinking water supplies for millions of Americans in farm country are contaminated with a suspected cancer-causing chemical from fertilizer, according to a new report by the Environmental Working Group.Read More
More than 3 million acres of soybeans and other crops were damaged when a herbicide called dicamba drifted onto their fields, according to a just-published report in The Washington Post on the “arms race between ever-stronger weeds and ever-stronger weed killers.”Read More
Lead has been detected at high levels in Chicago’s tap water, but that doesn’t mean residents of the Windy City have to drink it.Read More
What would it take to make the 2018 federal Farm Bill the best ever for public health and the environment?Read More
Rural Americans were key to President Trump’s election, but the president’s proposed budget would reward their support by allowing more animal waste, toxic pesticides and fertilizer pollution in their drinking water, said EWG.Read More
President Trump’s budget request managed to do something few could have imagined: unite farmers and foodies.Read More
President Trump’s proposed budget would slash vital programs at the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Agriculture that help farmers and rural communities reduce their exposure to farm pollution, including dangerous pesticides and pathogens from animal waste, said Scott Faber, EWG’s senior vice president for government affairs.Read More
As the southern Great Plains get hotter and drier, is federal policy that encourages farmers not to adapt to climate change leading to another Dust Bowl?Read More
Federal crop insurance policy is rewarding Southern Great Plains farmers’ failure to adapt to drought and hotter weather, and encouraging practices that could lead to another Dust Bowl, according to a new report by the Environmental Working Group.Read More
Central Iowans got bad news about the quality of their drinking water on Friday when a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit by the Des Moines Water Works against three northern Iowa drainage districts.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is giving farmers millions of taxpayer dollars a year to support the planting of cover crops, which reduce polluted runoff from farm fields. To see how this investment is paying off, the Environmental Working Group has documented – for the first time – the extent of cover crop use in three Corn Belt states.Read More
Here’s some news you can use as you begin your weekend.Read More
Mapping Cover Crops on Corn and Soybeans in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa, 2015-2016Read More
Oklahoma has a dangerous and widespread groundwater pollution problem caused by illegal discharges of toxic swine waste from industrial-scale swine Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations, or CAFOs. But an investigation by Waterkeeper Alliance and EWG found that Scott Pruitt – the state’s attorney general since 2011 and President Trump’s nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency – has not taken a single legal action to enforce Oklahoma’s stringent water quality laws and protect the public from a pollutant that can be deadly for infants.Read More