IATP: Midwest farmers being denied EQUP payments
A new report from the Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy (IATP) says that thousands of farmers are being turned away from Agriculture Department conservation payment programs while “large, polluting operations” are benefiting.
The report examines how the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) “pays for agricultural practices that are not environmentally beneficial or in some cases actively make the environment worse.”
The report examines the implementation of the program in 12 Midwest states: Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and North Dakota.
“This report finds that current resources are being misdirected to large, polluting operations while thousands of farmers are being turned away from contracts that could help them pay for conservation improvements and help their bottom lines,” the IATP report says.
“Reforms are needed to ensure that EQIP funds only go toward truly environmentally beneficial practices. USDA can better allocate finite resources to those who need it most, including those who integrate more climate friendly, agroecological practices and systems.“
The new report follows a 2021 IATP report that looked at access to both the EQIP and the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).
–The Hagstrom Report
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