Senate Approves Farm, Energy Bills

The Senate has been busy, passing both the Farm Bill and Energy Bill in the past couple weeks.

It wasn’t easy, but the Senate has passed its $286 billion version of the Farm Bill late last week by a 79-14 vote. The bill would expand subsidies to traditional commodity crops and has something for speciality producers for the first time. Now the House of Representatives and Senate must reconcile their versions.

Senate Ag Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) expects a quick conference between the House and Senate versions. President Bush has been a vocal opponent of the proposed Farm Bill, saying it misses the chance for true farm policy reform by continuing to reward big growers at the expense of family operations.

Earlier, the Senate approved the Energy Bill on Dec. 13 by a 86-8 vote. The House is expected to vote on the bill today.

According to the Associated Press, the bill calls for the first major increase — at 40% — by Congress in required automobile fuel efficiency in 32 years, something the auto companies have fought for two decades. The car companies will have to achieve an industry-wide average 35 mile per gallon for cars, small trucks, and SUVs over the next 13 years, an increase of 10 mpg over what the entire fleet averages today. And it would boost use of ethanol to 36 billion gallons a year by 2022, a nearly six-fold increase, and impose an array of new requirements to promote efficiency in appliances, lighting, and buildings.

If the bill is not changed from the version the Senate approved last week, the White House says it is ready to sign it into law, according to a Reuters report.

The House passed a broader bill on Dec. 6 that would have imposed $13 billion in new taxes on big oil companies like Exxon Mobil and required major utilities like Southern Co to get 15% of their power supplies from renewable sources by 2015. But Democrats in the Senate had to drop those items to avoid a White House veto and appease Republicans who were ready to delay a vote indefinitely, Rueters reports.

Reuters says the new fuel rules could reduce U.S. oil usage by 8%, or 2 million barrels per day by 2030, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

(Sources: Associated Press, Reuters)
 

Leave a Reply

Latest News
Roy Blunt
LegislationARA Recognizes Blunt, Heitkamp For Legislative Efforts …
February 17, 2017
Agricultural industry continues to face federal regulatory challenges. Thankfully, agriculture’s allies in the U.S. Senate stepped forward. The Agricultural Retailers Read More
LegislationThe Fertilizer Institute Commends Senate On Confirmatio…
February 17, 2017
The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) President Chris Jahn issued the following statement on the Senate confirmation of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Read More
Trump, Senate, Cabinet
LegislationBREAKING: Trump EPA Nominee Scott Pruitt Confirmed by S…
February 17, 2017
Scott Pruitt, who as Oklahoma’s attorney general spent years suing the Environmental Protection Agency over its efforts to regulate various Read More
ManagementFebruary Road Trip Edition
February 17, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj discuss their recent visits to Indiana and Kentucky. Read More
Heritage Cooperative Finished Building Aerial
ManagementHeritage Cooperative, Agland Co-op Approve Merger
February 17, 2017
Agland Co-op and Heritage Cooperative stockholders have both approved the merger agreement between Agland Co-op and Heritage Cooperative. Now begins Read More
LegislationARA Fly-In: Ag Retail Descends on Capitol Hill, Lawmake…
February 15, 2017
More than 100 agricultural retailers, distributors and suppliers headed to Capitol Hill Tuesday morning for the Agribusiness Congressional Fly-in, according to a Read More
Untreated soybean seed Heartland Coop
Seed/BiotechMarrone Bio Innovations, Groundwork BioAg Bio-stacked M…
February 13, 2017
Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. and Groundwork BioAg, Ltd have announced successful seed treatment field trials of the world’s first all-biological Read More
NL5000 With G5 Technology
SpreadersNew Leader Introduces NL5000 Dry Nutrient Applicator Wi…
February 13, 2017
New Leader, a division of Highway Equipment Company (HECO), has announced the next generation of spreading technology with the NL5000 Read More
Fertilizer Storage
Crop InputsThe State Of The Fertilizer Industry
February 9, 2017
He’s all hat, no horse.” It’s a humorous way of describing a person who tells a good story, but is Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Agriculture Agrees To Credit Agreement Amendme…
February 9, 2017
Pinnacle Operating Corp. has entered into an amendment (the “Amendment”) to its First Lien Credit Agreement that will provide for, Read More
ManagementUpdates on Upcoming Trips, Dow-DuPont, and the Des Moin…
February 9, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj review a few future travels, along with the latest on big company mergers and Read More
Championship Tractor Pull
EquipmentNational Farm Machinery Show Highlighted By Championshi…
February 9, 2017
The scream of monster engines, the stench of burning rubber and the ground-pounding vibrations of the country’s largest, loudest and Read More
Farmer and aptop
Matt Hopkins10 Warning Signs Your Website Is Grossly Outdated
February 8, 2017
Your Website is often a visitor’s first impression of your ag retail business. A positive first impression can set the Read More
Corn Field
InsecticidesArysta LifeScience, DuPont Collaborate On Rynaxpyr Prem…
February 8, 2017
Arysta LifeScience recently announced that it has entered into a global collaboration with DuPont Crop Protection for the development of Read More
Industry NewsThe Fertilizer Institute Board Elects New Chairman, Vic…
February 8, 2017
The Fertilizer Institute’s (TFI) Board of Directors has elected Chuck Magro, President and CEO of Agrium, and Tony Will, President Read More
Sonny Perdue
ManagementARA Joins More Than 600 Organizations In Support Of Per…
February 8, 2017
The Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) recently joined with more than 600 agricultural groups on a letter of support for Governor Read More
World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit Panel 2016
Crop InputsWorld Agri-Tech Innovation Summit To Be Held In San Fra…
February 8, 2017
“Breakthrough Applications and Business Models for Sustainable Farming” is the theme of the World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit to be held Read More
Cedar Country Cooperative
Eric SfiligojConsolidation In Agriculture: More Middle Movement
February 7, 2017
If you’ve regularly followed my column, you know I’m something of a movie junkie. Like many, one of my favorite Read More