Senate bill would prevent EPA from punishing cattle ranchers with methane regulations

Photo courtesy of Purdue Extension.

The US Senate is considering a bill that would prevent the EPA from suing farmers over carbon monoxide and methane emitted by livestock.

The bill is called the Livestock Regulatory Protection Act. Scott VanderWal is the vice president of the American Farm Bureau Federation. He told a Senate committee this week why the bill should become law.

“Part of the points we’ve made is that the progress we’ve made has been voluntary and market-based over the years and that needs to continue. We cannot receive generalizations or binding instructions from the government, as this has a huge economic and temporal impact,” VanderWal said.

He also said farmers were already working to improve the environment, but the possibility of EPA oversight of farms would be too much of a burden on US farmers.

“We wanted to emphasize to committee members that agriculture has been extremely innovative over many, many years,” according to VanderWal. “With the subject of greenhouse gas emissions and all that is coming up, we want them to understand the tremendous progress we have made and the improvements, and of course agriculture is always looking to improve. . We have become much more efficient both in terms of inputs and in terms of greenhouse gas emissions per unit of productivity.

VanderWal adds that farmers are the original conservationists.

“Farmers and ranchers want to leave their land and resources in better condition than they found it and that’s certainly very important because we live on the land, we drink the water that’s under the ground. and we depend on these resources for our livelihood, and there is no reason to abuse them. And in fact, we do our best to take care of them at all times,” VanderWal said.

According to the National Cattlemen’s Beef Associationmethane emissions from livestock account for only 2% of total greenhouse gas emissions in the United States

On Wednesday, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee heard testimony on the bill. The committee will now have to vote on the bill before sending it to the full Senate for consideration.

Click BELOW to hear CJ Miller’s radio report on the Livestock Regulatory Protection Act and how it would prevent the EPA from punishing livestock producers with methane regulations.

Source: ANBA Press Service.

Norman D. Briggs