Inside the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 that President Joe Biden is expected to sign into law this week, are tens of billions of dollars in subsidies to aid farm conservation efforts.
What Happened: The U.S. Senate and House passed the Inflation Reduction Act, with approximately $20 billion dollars dispersed over ten years to encourage farmers and ranchers to use environmentally friendly practices to reduce carbon emissions and increase the health of their land by expanding the amount of cover crops between harvests, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The package allocates $14 billion to help rural communities transition to clean energy sources, $5 billion to forestry programs and wildfire mitigation, and $4 billion to combat drought. It also promotes programs to connect farmers and other groups such as non-profits, and helps to implement new projects.
The bill instructs the Agriculture Department to give priority to “climate-smart” practices when allocating new funds, adding that beef and dairy cattle, as well as other farm animals, create more than 25% of the country’s methane emissions, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Criticisms Of Convservation Funding: GOP lawmakers objected to the conservation funding as the programs are typically funded by the bipartisan farm bill, which is a multiyear package for funding and setting federal farm policy.
Not to mention there is a provision extending for two years, capping the business losses non-corporate taxpayers can deduct at $250,000, while setting a new 15% minimum corporate income tax on large profitable companies which can negatively impact farmers and ranchers.
According to The Jamestown Sun, North Dakota has provided millions of dollars of subsidies to ranchers and farmers for at least three decades to improve conservation efforts. However, a recent 15-year trend analysis of Red River water quality by the U.S. Geological Survey showed mixed results.
Photo: Courtesy of Gage Skidmore on flickr
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