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Democrats Are Reaching Farmers With an Exciting Message: Green Agriculture

Every leading Democratic candidate supports a form of conservation that can reduce greenhouse gases and create jobs in rural America

Something you might have missed amid all the horserace and app-failure coverage of the Iowa caucuses: a deep discussion took place over the past year about the climate crisis and agriculture that could change the way our food system operates.

Every leading Democratic campaign now endorses an aggressive approach to conservation that could dramatically reduce greenhouse gases, improve water quality and enhance rural prosperity.

Candidates lined up to tour Matt Russell’s organic farm in central Iowa over the past year to learn about how a diversified cropping system involving livestock can suck carbon out of the air and sequester it in the soil to feed us better. Pete Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren came up with plans that would restructure farm policy to direct funding away from subsidizing production and toward conservation. Warren would increase funding 15-fold for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), to $45bn. The CSP pays farmers for regenerative agriculture practices – planting soil-saving cover crops, reducing chemical use and tillage, and all the while sequestering carbon in the soil.

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