Cory Booker, a New Jersey Democrat who’s one of the Senate Agriculture Committee’s newest members, is jumping into a range of farm policy issues, including pushing for as much as $20 billion a year in new conservation spending to be part of an upcoming climate and infrastructure package.
The outgoing Trump administration is tapping unspent USDA funding to provide coronavirus relief to contract producers for the first time while providing supplemental payments to hog farms. USDA also is adjusting payments calculations for many producers who have already received Coronavirus Food Assistance Program payments.
Farmers who were facing a steep drop in government payments in 2021 will instead see a third round of coronavirus relief payments and other producers and ag processors left out of previous aid programs this year will get help this time, under a massive stimulus package and government funding bill.
A nationwide cap and trade program hasn’t been on the legislative horizon since the idea died in Congress in 2010, but government and private market developers are counting on there being a robust demand for carbon offsets from a host of corporations, including energy companies, airlines and even major food companies, that need to offset their emissions.