Ag Groups Rally Against Dirty Air Act

While Dirty Air Act advocates seek ways to handcuff the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a diverse cast of organizations is pushing for the regulation of carbon pollution and other emissions tied to global warming and resultant public health risks.

Agricultural organizations and rural communities, often uniformly painted as opposed to emission regulation, are leading the way. More than 25 regionally diverse organizations sent a letter to the U.S. Senate urging lawmakers to reject Dirty Air Act mechanisms and uphold the ability of the EPA to follow through on the Clean Air Act.

"Support for Senator's Murkowski's resolution to block EPA regulation of greenhouse gases would be a vote against the health and security of our nation's farms and of the livelihoods of our farmers," the letter said. "Fears that farmers and ranchers would be unduly burdened by these regulations appear to not only be short-sighted, but incorrect."

"Agriculture and rural communities are particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change," said Jim Kleinschmit of the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. "From droughts to floods to temperature extremes, climate change puts farmers' livelihoods at risk and threatens the security of our nation's food supply."

Published: March 12, 2010