PennFuture Statement: Senate Farm Bill Protects PA Forests and Environment

HARRISBURG, Pa. (June 13, 2018) – PennFuture applauds the bipartisan effort that created the Senate version of the Farm Bill, also known as the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, marking the single largest piece of legislation supporting conservation for farmers, while including critical support for clean water efforts.
The Regional Conservation Partnership Program and the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program are both supported in the bill, which is good for the environment, America’s forests and our farmers.
“One of the most cost-effective actions anyone can do for clean water, including farmers, is to protect and restore forests along rivers and streams. Senator Bob Casey’s Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program legislation, which was successfully added to the Senate Farm Bill, will enable farmers in Pennsylvania, the greater Chesapeake Bay watershed, and across the United States, to more easily and effectively restore these small but critical buffer areas,” said Jacquelyn Bonomo, President and CEO, PennFuture. “PennFuture thanks Sen. Casey for this work and we hope we can continue to protect our national forests through this legislation.”
Chanté Coleman, director of the Choose Clean Water Coalition, added that the Senate Farm Bill will greatly support efforts to enhance streams and preserve wildlife.
“Streamside forest buffers are critical to prevent nutrient and sediment pollution from entering streams, as well as provide essential habitat for fish and wildlife,” Coleman said.
“In 2014, the six Chesapeake Bay watershed states, including Pennsylvania, committed to restoring 900 miles of streamside forest buffers annually, and have fallen far short each year. This legislation will help the states achieve this goal and will lead to cleaner water in Pennsylvania’s rivers and streams and downstream in the Chesapeake Bay.” 
PennFuture continues to oppose the House version of the Farm Bill, known as HR 2.
PennFuture is leading the transition to a clean energy economy in Pennsylvania, fighting big polluters with legal muscle, enforcing environmental laws, and supporting legislative policy that protects public health. PennFuture is engaging and educating citizens about the realities of climate change, and giving them the tools needed to influence lawmakers on the issues. Visit www.pennfuture.org for more information.
Stephanie Rex
Director of Communications