Farm Bill Crosses the Finish Line

Feb 20th, 2014 | By | Category: Land

Earlier this month, the Farm Bill passed both the House and the Senate and was signed into law by the President. While the bill isn’t perfect, it does contains a number of victories for conservation that will yield significant benefits to birds and other wildlife.

   Ducks like this Northern Pintail will benefit from Conservation Reserve Program monies and other Farm Bill provisions. (photo by Dan Cox / USFWS)


Ducks like this Northern Pintail will benefit from Conservation Reserve Program monies and other Farm Bill provisions. (photo by Dan Cox / USFWS)

The biggest win is the inclusion of conservation compliance. This was Audubon’s top priority in the 1,000+ page legislation. Conservation compliance requires farmers on environmentally-sensitive lands to implement and comply with conservation practices, which will protect millions of acres of wetlands and reduce erosion, in exchange for federal crop insurance subsidies. The conservation community also fought hard for the Sodsaver program, which would deny subsidies to farmers if they break previously unfarmed native prairie. The Senate bill included this provision, while the original House bill limited it to five states. Though we pressed for a national program, the regional Sodsaver provision survived for six states, primarily in the prairie pothole region.

For more on this story, visit: Farm Bill Crosses the Finish Line | Audubon.

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