Daily Harvest -- 9/10/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Chairman Rogers introduces ‘clean’ continuing resolution
- House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers introduced Tuesday what he described as a “clean” short-term Continuing Resolution to prevent a government shutdown at the end of the fiscal year and change a few existing laws.
Associated Press: House Votes to Block EPA Water Rules
- The Republican-controlled House on Tuesday approved a bill to block the Obama administration from implementing a rule that asserts regulatory authority over many of the nation's streams and wetlands — an action that critics call a classic Washington overreach.
Wall Street Journal: Can Big Ag Put the Cloud in the Crops Before Someone Else Does?
- Cargill Inc. is developing a software service that guides farmers on how to plant crops, a foray that pits the agricultural conglomerate against a host of rivals seeking to harvest reams of data to sell “prescriptive planting” technology in North America.
Agri-Pulse: Water and milk groups to work together on watershed improvement
- The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) and the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to promote increased cooperation and communication between the organizations in their efforts to make watershed‐level water quality improvements.
KPBS: Tax Breaks May Turn San Francisco’s Vacant Lots Into Urban Farms
- In San Francisco, there's a new program aimed at property owners who can resist the temptations of the sky-high real estate development market and turn their vacant lots into agricultural oases instead.
Wall Street Journal: As Agriculture Swoons in Drought, West Coast Firms Avoid Worst Effects
- Through the three-year drought ravaging the West Coast, one surprise has been the muted effect on many urban businesses.
Reuters: EU pushes for urgent energy deal in U.S. trade pact
- The United States should commit to exporting oil and natural gas to Europe under a transatlantic trade deal in light of the European Union's geopolitical situation, the EU trade commissioner said on Tuesday.
Des Moines Register: 2nd Iowa plant makes cellulosic ethanol reality
- As Iowa takes the lead in cellulosic ethanol processing, Quad County Corn Processors, Poet-DSM and other companies sent a letter to President Barack Obama on Tuesday encouraging him to back off a proposal to reduce the RFS.
The Guardian: Solar energy cells you can print out catching commercial eye, says CSIRO
- Renewable energy generation that allows flexible solar power cells to be printed off and attached to places such as windows and smartphones is close to commercialization, the CSIRO has said.
NewsObserver.com: Democrat sues to get name off Kansas Senate ballot
- The Democrat attempting to drop out of the Kansas Senate race against Sen. Pat Roberts, filed a petition with the state Supreme Court on Tuesday to remove his name from the ballot.
Arizona Capitol Times: Renewable-energy project gives state fastest clean-energy job growth
- Arizona claims the biggest growth in renewable-energy jobs in the nation for the second quarter of 2014, due in part to a proposed Solar Wind Energy Tower project in San Luis which could add 2,350 workers at the $1.5 billion plant.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Des Moines Register: Study: Parents support strong school food standards
- A majority of parents said they support government school nutrition standards in place, according to a study released this week.
Portland Tribune: Urban vote key to GMO campaign
- The fate of Oregon’s genetically modified organism labeling initiative will hinge on whether heavy spending by opponents can overcome the liberal leanings of urban voters, experts say.
Los Angeles Times: General Mills in agreement to buy organic snack maker Annie's
- General Mills Inc. has agreed to acquire Annie’s Inc., one of the largest producers of natural and organic branded food, in a deal worth $820 million.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Bloomberg: Australia Agriculture Seen Luring Foreign Buyers on Food Demand
- Overseas investment in agricultural assets in Australia, the world’s third-biggest beef and sugar exporter, is set to deepen as countries outside of China step up their push to secure access to farms and food supplies.
Washington Post: Lavender farmers rebel against EU chemical rules
- The sweet smell of lavender is tinged with bitterness this year in the south of France, as farmers who harvest the flower protest European regulations linking the plant to chemical toxins.
Reuters: Islamic State advances in Iraq force Syria to cancel wheat deal
- Syria has canceled a deal to sell 200,000 tonnes of wheat from its 2013 local crop to Iraqi private traders as conflict raging in both countries has paralyzed transport of the grain, a source at Syria's state grain agency said on Tuesday.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
San Jose Mercury News: California drought: Statewide water use drops
- Deep into the third year of a historic drought, Californians are finally starting to take water conservation seriously.
Agri-Pulse: The House says whoa to WOTUS
- Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy weighed in on Rep. Southerland’s legislation to reign in the EPA’s proposed rule defining waters of the U.S.
San Francisco Chronicle: New fishing rule protects endangered seabird
- Federal fisheries managers have proposed a new rule requiring West Coast commercial fishermen who unroll long lines of baited hooks on the ocean bottom also put out long lines of fluttering plastic to scare off seabirds trying to steal the bait.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Washington Post: Why putting off immigration reform won’t make it any easier
- A number of immigration legal experts pointed out that a backlash against the president for acting on immigration is likely to come regardless of his timing, whether he acts now, or sometime between November and the end of the year.
Washington Post: Chicken houses could offer Va. farmers stability
- As the agriculture industry evolves, leaders in Southside Virginia have begun to believe that the route Mills took could offer a path to viability for a younger generation of farmers, providing steady income to offset the risks inherent in other common crops and livestock, like tobacco and beef.
Ag Alert: Commentary: Reporters discuss how, and why, they cover agriculture
- As people have become more interested in the sources of their food, they have also become more interested in reading about where their food originates and about the people who produce it.
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