In the wake of the IPCC report, you may have missed out on this proposal, which bears integrally on our economy, our environment and our health.
The 2002 Farm Bill is up for renewal. On Wednesday, Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns introduced a new Farm Bill that, while not as revolutionary as some had hoped, takes steps to mitigate some of the uglier faces of large-scale agribusiness.
The new bill eliminates subsidies for farmers who earn more than $200 thousand per year (down from $2.5 million), and aims to democratize the current subsidy system which tends to over-compensate highly productive farmers and under-compensate farmers who experience crop loss.
Other reforms include an additional $7.8 billion in funding reserved for conservation programs, $4.2 billion for water quality enhancement, and $1.6 billion for renweable energy research and grants. Additionally, the new bill reserves $3.2 billion for purchasing more fruits and vegetables to improve nutrition assistance programs.
A summary of the 2007 Farm Bill is available here.