Congressional Democrats have offered an ambitious legislative framework for 2019. Titled the Green New Deal, it seeks to tackle impending climate threats while generating innovative opportunities in the energy, transportation, and agricultural sectors. The Green New Deal includes support of soil health. Between 50% to 70% of agricultural soil has been lost, and rebuilding soil health is crucial for food system security, water quality, and climate change mitigation.
A bi-partisan movement at the state level is calling for what is termed “Healthy Soils Legislation.” Proposed bills nationwide promote good land stewardship through principles and practices that support the aspirations of the Green New Deal by providing practical support for farmers and ranchers, many of whom might not otherwise be supportive of climate efforts. Speaking to this point, Bill McKibben, founder of the global climate movement, 350.org, stated, “Soil is increasingly taking its rightful and necessary place in the climate fight; this is a battle farmers and ranchers can help the world win.”