Friday, January 29, 2010

Cap and Trade legislation in Congress

Farmers Flock to Online Petition Site

Washington--Farm Bureau members are signing onto an online petition site to let Congress know that they think cap-and-trade legislation means higher energy and food costs. Thousands have already signed and the petition continues to grow. Many think the proposed legislation will shrink the American agricultural sector, resulting in a drop of U.S. food production

The online petition is on the American Farm Bureau site:

Under cap-and-trade legislation in Congress, American families will end up footing the bill. According to the Department of Energy, energy costs could grow by $1,870 per household. Combined with higher costs for food, the additional yearly hit on families would total about $2,300 per household. Said another way, the cap-and-trade law would impose costs of up to $200 billion a year on American taxpayers.

“At the farm gate, as much as 17 percent of U.S. agricultural land currently used for food production will be idled and planted in trees under the House bill,” said American Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman. “That is because the vast majority of incentive payments will go to people who choose to grow and maintain trees for greenhouse gas reduction, rather than farmers who work to put food on Americans’ tables. This shift in land use will hurt consumers at the grocery store. Food costs could rise by up to an average of $33 billion annually in 2020 and up to $51 billion annually by 2030 as a result of this legislation.”

Higher fuel and fertilizer costs to American farmers and ranchers will will put them at a competitive disadvantage in international markets with other countries because they do not have similar carbon emission restrictions.

“My goal is to engage at least 2 percent of Farm Bureau members,” said Stallman. “I am personally asking members to sign a new farm cap on its bill (if you are like me, you have a lot of unused caps in your closet) and hand-deliver it to a member of Congress with the message “Don’t Cap Our Future.”

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