A must read for Biofuel searcher.. New Release of Biofuel Secrets ..A must read for for every US voter and concerned citizen.. challenges the reader to explore new possibilities and new mindsets that will ultimately be required if the world is truly ready to make a change.. amazon.com US onlyIn short: Chair of House Ag Comittee a huge stumbling block for climate bill, as he refuses to accept EPA ruling that indirect land use emissions fro biofuels be assessed. Thinks U.S. farmers are "not responsible" for land use issues overseas...that such assessments will be demanded in future for other AG activities besides biofuel ag...which will "put us out of business"...rumor is he and others are looking towards major demand for inclusion of offsets from agriculture.
Posted By Keith Good On June 9, 2009
Climate Change: Chairman Peterson Discusses Waxman-Markey on AgriTalk
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) appeared on yesterday's AgriTalk Radio Program with Mike Adams- a key part of their discussion focused on details associated with the Waxman-Markey climate legislation, which the House Ag Committee will review in a hearing scheduled for Thursday.
To listen to this portion of the discussion from yesterday's show, just cliicck here (MP3-11:00).
In part, Chairman Peterson indicated that, "We are continuing to have discussions right at the moment with the Energy and Commerce Committee staff about the areas that we have problems with. We have made a little bit of progress- I think the next meeting is tomorrow morning- but we are not anywhere close at this point to having this resolved and I am not sure if we are going to be able to resolve it because there is a lot of ideology that has been woven into this thing. And one of the biggest problems I have is that we are mixing up energy independence and climate change- kind of in the same bailiwick. That is kind of a dangerous combination because they aretrying to bring in this idea that some how or another we are some how responsible for what is going on in the rain forests in Brazil and Indonesia and other places. I have been to Brazil enough to know that that is not the case."
And near the end of Chairman Peterson's appearance yesterday on AgriTalk he reiterated his concerns about having the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) involved in some aspects of Waxman-Markey that pertain to agriculture- to listen to this clip, just cliicck here (MP3-35 seconds).
With respect to potential executive branch allocation of responsibility between the EPA and USDA within portions of the climate bill, a news release issued yesterday by the House Agriculture Republicans stated that, "The Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack has made conflicting statements over the past two weeks about the role the U.S. Department of Agriculture should play with a national cap-and-trade system that would be created under the Waxman-Markey climate change and energy bill (H.R. 2454)."
Yesterday's news release added that, "On a May 27 visit to Kentucky, the Institute for Rural Journalism at the University of Kentucky reported Secretary Vilsack as saying he would be 'advocating forcefully' for two provisions to be added to the Waxman-Markey bill. One of those provisions would add carbon credits for agriculture and forestry while the other would give authority to USDA to administer those programs. Vilsack added that USDA is better suited than EPA to administer an offsets program since it has offices and employees 'in virtually every county in the country.'
"Then roughly one week later on June 5, Secretary Vilsack changed his view that USDA should play a lead role in any agriculture and forestry offsets program. According to an article by E & E News, Vilsack said 'it's important for us to focus on the fact that both agencies need to work together. This is very complicated legislation, and we both have to work together. I am absolutely committed to working with EPA.'"
Sec. Vilsack's comments on this issue were included in a Daily Radio Newsline audio clip from USDA (one minute) on Friday- a link that was part of yesterday's FarmPolicy.com update.
Climate Change- Speaker Pelosi and Ag Concerns
Dan Looker reported yesterday at Agriculture Online that, "At a visit to a Des Moines, Iowa middle school Saturday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), said that the climate change bill recently passed by the Energy and Commerce Committee will go through more changes before coming up for a vote in the full House.
"'The Energy and Commerce Committee was one step and now it will go to other committees and agriculture is very important,' Pelosi told Agriculture Online at a press conference after a short public meeting with education officials to highlight the role that federal stimulus legislation is playing in schools.
"Pelosi said that after her visit to Iowa she was headed to Minnesota, where she planned to meet with House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, who has expressed his own reservations about the climate change bill."
Mr. Looker indicated that, "Representative Leonard Boswell, an Iowa Democrat on the Agriculture Committee, told Agriculture Online that he agrees with Peterson's concerns about the climate bill and that he's participated in discussions with Pelosi and also Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, where Peterson shared his concerns. Peterson has also threatened to vote against the climate bill if changes aren't made in the way the EPA is regulating biofuels.A recent rule proposed by EPA would include so-called indirect land use when EPA calculates the carbon output of biofuels production. The result of that calculation makes all biodiesel and ethanol from new plants ineligible for mandates that require the nation's fuel refiners to blend in biofuels.
"Boswell said during Peterson's recent phone call with Pelosi, the Speaker seemed sympathetic to Peterson's concerns.
"'She understands we have some issues and we're going to look after the needs of agriculture,' Boswell said."
Jennifer A. Dlouhy reported late last week at the Houston Chronicle Online that, "Jim DiPeso, an environmentalist who backs the [Waxman-Markey climate] legislation, said the challenge is daunting.
"'Manhandling a bill through the congressional sausage machine is never an undertaking for the faint-hearted,' DiPeso said, 'especially for an issue as devilishly complicated as climate change.'
"DiPeso predicted the task will test Pelosi, Waxman and bill co-sponsor Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass.
"'There's no question that Waxman and Markey will have to draw deeply on their political skills to thread the needle and assemble a majority' of support among the 435 House members, said DiPeso, the policy director of Republicans for Environmental Protection. 'There are many powerful and territorial players to please.'"
Ms. Dlouhy added that, "For Pelosi and Waxman, any moves to assuage Peterson's concerns - or those of Democrats on Rangel's Ways and Means panel - risk alienating lukewarm supporters of the bill. Already, the measure is drawing criticism from both the left and right, because Waxman and Markey made significant concessions to get the proposal through the Energy and Commerce Committee.
"For instance, liberal environmentalists insist the effectiveness of the proposed greenhouse gas limits would be undercut by Waxman's decision to allow more than two-thirds of the emissions allowances to be donated to electric utilities, trade-sensitive industries, oil refiners and other interests."
Meanwhile, Julie Harker reported yesterday at Brownfield that, "National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson says those against a cap and trade system as part of climate legislation need to realize the U.S. is heading in that direction. For those against cap and trade, and many of them are in agriculture - Johnson says, they need to accept that it's coming, 'They have their collective heads in the sand on this thing. This is gonna happen. The rest of the world is doing it, the science is settled.'
"But, he says Farmers Union won't sign onto the current House bill unless USDA, not EPA, handles the ag side of carbon offsets, 'USDA probably has the best science in the world on agricultural offsets, so they should be in charge of it.'
"And, Johnson says there should not be penalties for 'early adopters', 'We think they ought to be rewarded, for those farmers or ranchers who've adopted practices recently that are good for the climate.'"
Hinesburg, Vermont, U.S.A.
office: (802) 482 2848
mobile: (802) 735-7794
skype: rachel smolker