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Areas of Focus

Areas of Focus

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Growing farm conservation backlog shows need for Congress to spend smarter

Despite billions of dollars in federal spending, the U.S. has a growing backlog of farmers seeking assistance for conservation efforts that can protect drinking water supplies. It’s time for Congress...

Federal crop insurance reform vital for incentivizing climate adaptation on farms

New research proves the climate crisis is costing taxpayers billions of dollars in federal crop insurance payouts for losses due to rising temperatures, underscoring the urgent need for insurance...

Interview: Lack of ‘conservation compliance’ highlights need for stricter federal oversight

Farmers are failing to comply with federal “conservation compliance” requirements designed to protect wetlands and soil, according to University of Iowa Associate Professor Silvia Secchi, who says the...

How Cover Crops Can Help Farmers, Protect Drinking Water and Fight Climate Change

As farmers struggle with a plummeting farm economy in the wake of President Trump's trade war, the administration is rushing to send a second round of cash payments – reportedly totaling $15 billion...

Farm Conservation on the Rise, But Also Threats to Drinking Water and Climate

The latest federal Census of Agriculture shows that more farms are adopting conservation practices that can help keep drinking water clean and slow climate change, but it also shows that much more...

The Farm Bill Should Better Protect America’s Drinking Water

America's drinking water is under threat from a formidable foe: polluted farm runoff, which contaminates the tap water supplies for millions of people, especially in rural areas.

8 Reasons Senate Farm Bill Is Better Than House Bill

It's not hard to see the differences between the terrible, partisan House farm bill and the bipartisan Senate farm bill

The Greenest Farm Bill Ever?

Almost a year ago, we identified six steps Congress could take to address the serious public health threats posed by farm pollution. Since then, the pollution problems posed by agriculture – including...

6 Ways the House Farm Bill Betrays Perdue’s Principles

The farm bill produced by the House Agriculture Committee violates many of the principles developed by U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue.

6 Strikes Against the House Farm Bill

Every federal farm bill is a chance to feed hungry Americans, build healthier diets, support family farmers and reduce farm pollution

Senate Bill Would Improve Water Quality in Critical Watersheds Nationwide

As Congress continues to craft the next farm bill, two critical conservation challenges need to be addressed.

6 Steps Toward the Greenest Farm Bill Ever

What would it take to make the 2018 federal Farm Bill the best ever for public health and the environment?

‘Retired’ Sensitive Cropland: Here Today, Gone Tomorrow?

Instead of expanding CRP, more funding in the 2018 Farm Bill should go to both of these highly effective programs. That would be a better deal for taxpayers, the environment and public health.

Lawsuit Dismissal Spells Bad News for Iowa Water Quality

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.

Will More Farm Subsidies Help the Rural Economy?

It's an understatement to say “there is real potential for a crisis in rural America,” as House Agriculture Committee Chairman Michael Conaway warned before a hearing on the new farm bill.

Data Show Farmers Must Do More to Protect the Environment, Public Health

Across the nation, Americans are seeing the price of farm pollution firsthand in contaminated drinking water, toxic algal blooms and pesticide-laden foods.

Wisconsin Farm Group Admits to Tainting Drinking Water, Continues Failing Residents

What if your neighbor poured toxic chemicals into your drinking water but only agreed to pay for part of the cleanup? Well, that's exactly what's happening in northeastern Wisconsin.

Blue-Green Algae Threaten Human Health and Aquatic Ecosystems Nationwide

From Florida beaches to Lake Erie to the California Delta, algal blooms threaten human health and aquatic ecosystems. Cyanobacteria, commonly known as blue-green algae, produce toxins that can make...

Low-Cost Solutions Can Clean Up Farms’ Toxic Water Pollution

Low-tech, low-cost prairie strips on farms – buffers of grass, trees or other permanent vegetation planted along the banks of rivers, streams, lakes and other waterways – can reduce toxic farm...

Unregulated Farm Pollution Dirties Calif. Air and Water

A study released this week by the University of California, Davis, found that farming is the biggest source of nitrogen pollution in California, contributing harmful pollutants to the state's air and...

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