Carbon, in the context of greenhouse gas emissions and climate change, is being talked about at all levels of government. In Washington state, the legislature has been focused this session on carbon regulation bills—a low carbon fuel standard and a cap-and-trade program. At the federal level, carbon markets are becoming increasingly front and center. In May’s issue, Wheat Life sat down (virtually, of course) with Keira Franz, environmental policy advisor for the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG), and Nicole Berg, NAWG’s vice president and a wheat grower from Paterson, Wash., to ask them what they are seeing and hearing.
We are hearing from USDA that they are looking at some regional pilot projects that focus on more of the conservation and forestry programs, looking at cost shares where they focus on climate-smart practices in certain regions. Some of the things we’ve been hearing are related to the Regional Conservation Partnership Program, such as projects that focus on practices that sequester carbon or reduce greenhouse gas emissions, whether that’s fertilizer or manure, forestry issues, crop production or grasslands.