In the coming months, Congress will begin review and debate on the reauthorization of Farm Bill programs, including those under the energy title. Programs in the energy title are among the 37 programs that do not have baseline beyond the 2008 Farm Bill. That is the basis for a call on Congress to support full funding for Farm Bill energy programs.
The National Association of Conservation Districts, the National Farmers Union and 16 other groups are asking members of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee not to downsize energy security and economic independence goals. The letter states that shifting this funding now, just as advanced biofuels refineries and other clean energy development projects are taking root, would thwart the nation's economic and environmental goals and hurt rural economies.
"As landowners and conservationists, we fully support the development and use of renewable fuels from agriculture and forestry products" said NACD President Steve Robinson.
NFU President Roger Johnson says energy projects such as biodiesel, ethanol plants, and now wind energy have characterized rural economic development for many years. Renewable energy production from America's farms, ranches and forestlands has never been more critical as the U.S. seeks greater economic security, energy independence, and jobs.