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AFBF Calls on Congress to Nullify EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Scheme

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 31, 2010 – Now is the time for Congress to nullify greenhouse gas permit requirements that were announced this week by the Environmental Protection Agency. According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, efforts under way in Congress and legal challenges undertaken by state governments are offering corrective paths to undo a very real disaster headed toward farm and ranch families.

“We believe the EPA’s greenhouse gas requirements will lead to costly and ineffective regulations on America’s farmers and ranchers,” said AFBF President Bob Stallman. “We vehemently oppose regulating carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act because we believe it will require livestock producers and other agricultural operations to obtain costly and time-consuming permits as conditions to continue farming.”

Stallman said Farm Bureau strongly backs a Senate resolution to disapprove of EPA’s greenhouse gas regulations under the Clean Air Act by Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), and a companion measure in the House introduced by House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) and Rep. Ike Skelton (D-Mo.). Stallman also welcomed legal challenges from many state government officials who have stepped forward to express their valid objection.

According to Stallman, the Agriculture Department warned in 2008 that if greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural operations are regulated under the Clean Air Act, numerous farms that currently are not subject to a costly and time-consuming permitting process would, for the first time, become covered entities.

“We are concerned that the EPA decision announced Monday leads us down a direct path that fulfills USDA’s prediction. If Congress does not follow the lead of Sens. Murkowski, Lincoln and Reps. Peterson and Skelton, farmers will fall within the scope of regulation and struggle to cope with ineffective greenhouse gas regulations that are not economically sustainable. We urge Congress to take action before the regulations take effect next January.”

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Contacts: Tracy Taylor Grondine
(202) 406-3642
tracyg@fb.org
Mace Thornton
(202) 406-3641
macet@fb.org