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United States To Invest $1 Billion To Encourage Environment Friendly Agriculture

The investment is the latest effort by the Biden administration to tackle climate change.

Chintu Das
Natural Farming
Natural Farming

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack told Reuters that the US Department of Agriculture will invest $1 billion in pilot programmes to encourage farming, ranching, and forestry techniques that reduce greenhouse gas emissions or collect and store climate-warming carbon. 

The Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities initiative will be announced later by the EPA. The USDA's Commodity Credit Corporation, which receives up to $30 billion yearly from the US Treasury to assist stabilise agricultural commodity prices and boost farm revenue, will be used to fund the programme. 

The investment is the latest Biden administration initiative aimed at tackling climate change, with a goal of halving greenhouse gas emissions in the agricultural sector by 2030 and putting the US on a road to net-zero emissions by 2050. 

Initiatives to minimize or capture methane emissions on dairy farms, as well as initiatives to extend the adoption of farming methods that absorb more climate-warming carbon from the atmosphere and store it in the soil, are examples of qualified projects. 

As food firms and exporters increasingly try to decarbonize their supply chains, expanding such methods might boost the value of U.S. farm goods, according to Vilsack. 

"We believe there is a growing potential here," he told Reuters in an interview, "as customers want more responsibly produced food here in the United States and definitely in the export market." 

Some climate-focused programmes have had difficulty scaling up because costs frequently outweigh gains. 

"This initiative can effectively decrease the risk to farmers so that they can learn how to do it and experience favourable outcomes," Vilsack explained. 

Qualified public and private groups, such as state and local governments, non-profits, small enterprises, tribal governments and organisations, and schools and universities, will be given funding. 

Applications for awards of $5 million to $100 million must be submitted by April 8, while applications for smaller funds must be submitted by May 27. 

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