Voters in 37 states on Nov. 6 will decide 166 ballot questions on issues that could impact agriculture and rural communities significantly, including animal confinement regulations, fuel taxes and climate change. And there could be even more such proposals in 2020.
USDA’s Innovation Center is making it easier for rural America to qualify for funding from the Office of Rural Development’s $222 billion loan portfolio and $36.6 billion in fiscal 2018 appropriated funds. It’s all part of an administration push to create more rural jobs and boost economic growth.
Traditional petroleum-based plastics that can survive for centuries are piling ever deeper across once pristine beaches and ocean floors around the world. According to a report from the World Economic Forum and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, “the ocean is expected to contain one ton of plastic for every three tons of fish by 2025, and by 2050, more plastics than fish (by weight).”
The omnibus funding bill for 2018 that President Donald Trump signed into law last week specifically acknowledges “the importance of the deployment of wireless broadband services in rural areas of the United States.”
Last year, U.S. cellulosic ethanol production rose to 10 million gallons, a milestone but still a tiny fraction of the 2007 Energy Bill’s original 5.5 billion-gallon mandate for 2017. Still, with the lure of big premiums, the industry expects the expansion to continue.