FarmPolicy

August 20, 2019

Gov. Romney Highlights Energy Issues in Ohio

Categories: Rural America

On the second day of his campaign swing through the Hawkeye state, President Obama today highlighted energy issues and specifically talked about wind energy policy and Rural America. During the course of his remarks today in Oskaloosa, Iowa, he contrasted the administration’s view on wind energy policy with those of Mitt Romney, his GOP opponent.

However, Politico reported today that, “At the entrance of a coal mine in southeastern Ohio, Mitt Romney tried to stake a claim as the most energy-friendly candidate…[S]tanding next to a backhoe bucket filled with raw coal, Romney told the crowd that Obama, who is speaking today in Iowa, is running ads in the key swing state of Ohio saying he supports coal while telling other audiences that he thinks the nation needs only wind and solar power.

“‘I thought, how in the world can you go out there and tell people things that just aren’t true?’ Romney asked. ‘If you believe the whole answer for energy needs is wind and solar, then say that. I know he says that to some audiences out West. Then just say it.'”

Today’s article added that, “The White House and the Obama campaign have spent months working to counter GOP allegations that the president has ‘declared war on coal.'”

A portion of Gov. Romney’s remarks from today can be viewed in the following video clip.

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Pres. Obama Addresses Wind Energy, Rural America

Categories: Rural America

At a campaign stop in Oskaloosa, Iowa today, President Obama discussed issues associated with wind energy and Rural America.

To listen to a clip from today’s speech, just click on this audio link:
 
 
 

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Farm Policy Issues; Trade; and Regulations

Farm Bill and Policy Issues

DTN Ag Policy Editor Chris Clayton reported yesterday (link requires subscription) that, “Despite the economics of crop production and federal spending right now, there is still room for conservation practices and promoting wildlife, USDA’s chief conservationist said.

Dave White, chief of the Natural Resources Conservation Service, spoke over the weekend to hunters at the Pheasant Fest convention and expo in Kansas City. White said landowners are trying to balance the various growing demands on their land.

“‘We have agriculture production and we have sustainability and we can have it built in where wildlife is a part of it,’ White said. ‘I don’t think there is one farm or one ranch or one woodlot in the United States of America that doesn’t have room for wildlife.’”

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Ag-Rural Economy; “Green” Jobs- Climate Issues; and Chairman Lincoln

Ag-Rural Economy

Shaila Dewan reported in today’s New York Times that, “In August, [John Hart, a farmer in the hills just east of the Mississippi Delta, and other Southern farmers] thought they had a bumper crop — the best they had seen in years. It was the kind of crop that could put you ahead, for once. Pay off that combine.

But just as the harvest began in September, it began to rain, and it kept raining through October, normally one of the driest months here. The soybeans shriveled and blackened with mold. The rice keeled over into the mud. The cotton hardened into tight little spitballs. The sweet potatoes rotted underground. When the combines could get into the fields, they scarred them with deep ruts that will make next year’s planting more expensive.

“Last year, with commodity prices running at record highs, farming across the nation seemed to be bucking the recession. This year, with the rest of the country in a slow recovery from a man-made disaster, nature forced a crash of its own in the South.

“‘I was counting my money until September,’ Mr. Hart said. ‘I don’t know whether I’m going to be able to farm another year or not.’”

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Global Economy Impacts U.S. Agriculture, Farm Bill, Rural America, and the New Congress

Global Economy Impacts U.S. Agriculture

Andrew Martin, writing in last week’s New York Times, reported that, “The long economic boom, fueled by easy credit that allowed people to spend money they did not have, led to a huge oversupply of cars, houses and shopping malls, as recent months have made clear. Now, add one more item to the list: an oversupply of cows.

“And it turns out that shutting down the milk supply is not as easy as closing an automobile assembly line.

“As a breakneck expansion in the global dairy industry turns to bust, Roger Van Groningen must deal with the consequences. In a warehouse that his company runs here, 8 to 20 trucks pull up every day to unload milk powder. Bags of the stuff — surplus that nobody will buy, at least not at a price the dairy industry regards as acceptable — are unloaded and stacked into towering rows that nearly fill the warehouse.”

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Food Safety

I. Food Safety
II. Farm Bill Issues
III. Rural America

I. Food Safety

Yesterday, National Public Radio aired a segment on food safety by Ben Adler from K.A.Z.U. radio, entitled, “California Growers Look at Crop Safety.”

The report noted that, “Following a series of E. coli outbreaks, produce growers in California are working with scientists and state officials to create new safety guidelines. Growers are hoping the new rules will calm fears about the safety of their crops and revitalize the industry.”


Photo by U.S.D.A.

More specifically, Mr. Adler indicated that scientists are still trying to find out all of the ways E. coli and other dangerous bacteria get into produce. Linda Harris from the University of California at Davis stated that, “Ten years ago we weren’t even talking about good agriculture practices for fruits and vegetables, they weren’t even on the radar screen.”

Federal and state government officials and major supermarket chains are insisting that farmers come up with uniform, verifiable, food safety guidelines and this is putting pressure on farmers in California’s Salinas Valley, the “salad bowl of America,” the report said.

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