TFI 2010: By Air And By Land

Every initiative The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) undertakes is designed to benefit the agriculture community and provides it the tools necessary to produce bountiful crops to feed a growing nation and world. Fertilizer is a precious resource that plays a critical role in world food production. Throughout all of its programs, TFI remains focused on sharing the big picture story — fertilizer as a strategic commodity — while continuously emphasizing its greater role in contributing to world food production. During the first year of the 111th Congress, TFI was busy representing the industry on numerous legislative and regulatory issues of importance to the industry, such as climate change and security.

On June 26, the U.S. House of Re­presentatives passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (H.R. 2998) by a vote of 219 to 212. Within a few months, the Senate had followed suit and its Environment and Public Works Committee favorably reported the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act (S. 1733), the first step in the Senate toward enacting climate change legislation.

Bad Bills

Throughout the year, TFI walked the halls of Congress and testified on several occasions to emphasize that, as written, these bills will render the U.S. nitrogen industry uncompetitive against nations without climate policies and threaten to force fertilizer production overseas to countries that do not regulate emissions resulting in a loss both for the economy and for the cause of reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

“We believe that these bills may result in fuel switching, which has the potential to drive up the price of natural gas,” says TFI President Ford West. “Every $3 increase in the price of natural gas adds more than $1 billion to the cost of nitrogen production.”

TFI also believes that U.S. growers can play an important role in the reduction of climate change related emissions. Nevertheless, H.R. 2998 lists several agricultural practices to avoid or reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that reflect a lack of understanding of the science behind the nitrogen cycle and the essential role of plant nutrients in food production. “TFI was pleased to see that agricultural offset language (S. 2729) introduced by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and six democrat co-sponsors uses science-based recommendations to promote best management practices for the application of fertilizer inputs.”

TFI continues to work with members of the Senate to promote legislative language that implements a climate change policy which preserves the United States’ ability to compete in a global marketplace while reducing GHG emissions to protect the environment.

In lieu of Congress taking action on climate change, EPA in December announced its proposed endangerment finding for GHGs, which seeks to provide EPA with the authority to regulate GHG emissions under the Clean Air Act (CAA). This proposed regulation could have serious implications for the agricultural sector and will be closely monitored by TFI.

Security

While the Senate approved legislation to extend by one year the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) authority to regulate chemical facilities, the House considered legislation to expand legislative language to include a mandate for inherently safer technology (IST), an engineering process which evaluates all systems within an operation to determine if there could be a “safer” technology used, whether a part, valve, motor or even a product used. The Chemical Facility Antiterrorism Act of 2009 (H.R. 2868) was passed by the House of Representatives by a vote of 230 to 193.

TFI registered its opposition to the provision noting that if the IST mandate and assessments as contained in this legislation are made law, they could well jeopardize the availability of widely used, lower-cost sources of essential plant nutrient products used by America’s farmers and ranchers.

“The fertilizer industry considers homeland security to be a top priority and has a long-standing record of promoting safety and security of its products through their production, storage, transport and use,” says West. “We don’t have to trade food security for chemical security and TFI is optimistic that we can work with members of the Senate to craft chemical security legislation that takes into account our nation’s food production system.”

A bill similar to the House passed version is currently being drafted in the Senate by members of the Home­land Security Committee, who will most likely have primary jurisdiction of the legislation.

Leave a Reply

Latest News
Young Corn Plants
ManagementTimac Agro USA Acquires Michigan Ag Retailer
January 20, 2017
Timac Agro USA, an agriculture supply company specializing in high-efficiency plant and animal nutrition products, has acquired St. Louis,MI-based A&E Ag, Read More
Soybean field
Crop InputsNufarm Teams Up With John Deere Financial
January 19, 2017
Nufarm and John Deere Financial have teamed up to help farmers grow a better tomorrow. This program helps make purchases Read More
Sonny Perdue
LegislationTrump Formally Picks Perdue As Agriculture Secretary
January 19, 2017
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump officially announced Sonny Perdue as his choice for secretary of agriculture on Thursday, selecting a former Read More
ManagementPresident Trump, Wisconsin Review, and a Dow-DuPont Upd…
January 18, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj reflect on a new administration, a recent winter show, and crop protection company mergers. Read More
Industry NewsBayer, MS Technologies Get China Approval For Balance G…
January 18, 2017
MS Technologies and Bayer have received import approval from China for Balance GT soybeans. The new Balance GT Soybean Performance Read More
Werner Baumann, Bayer AG, and Hugh Grant, Monsanto
Industry NewsReport: Monsanto, Bayer CEOs Among Latest to Make Trump…
January 18, 2017
The chief executive officers of German chemical giant Bayer AG and U.S. seed behemoth Monsanto, Werner Baumann and Hugh Grant, Read More
Giant Ragweed
HerbicidesStudy: Focusing On Weed Seedbank Can Help Manage Herbic…
January 18, 2017
Researchers writing in the latest issue of the journal Weed Science provide important insights on the control of herbicide-resistant giant Read More
Management3 Financial Trends To Watch In Agriculture
January 17, 2017
I recently had the opportunity to attend a meeting of credit managers for Midwest ag supply and input companies, in part Read More
Andersons Retail Store
CropLife 100The Andersons To Close All Retail Stores; Shutdown Does…
January 16, 2017
In a stunning announcement to the Toledo area, The Andersons Inc. said on Sunday that it would close its two Read More
Trimble TMX-2050 In-Cab Display
Eric SfiligojPrecision To Lead Agriculture In 2017?
January 16, 2017
Another new year is upon us! And I’m certain I speak for many in the agricultural world when I say Read More
Corn
Eric SfiligojThe Mood From Madison? In A Holding Pattern
January 16, 2017
Last week, I had the chance to attend the annual Wisconsin AgriBusiness Classic show in Madison, WI. It’s been a Read More
Syngenta Sign
Crop InputsAccenture Helps Syngenta Transform Its Global Logistics
January 13, 2017
Syngenta, a leading agriculture company, has collaborated with Accenture to design and implement a new digital logistics operating model across Read More
Fall Creek Seth Harden The Nature Conservancy
StewardshipLocal Farmers’ Watershed Initiative: Continuous Improve…
January 13, 2017
The goal in the Big Pine Watershed Project is to more intentionally do what local farmers and responsible ag retailers Read More
HerbicidesEPA Expands Enlist Duo Herbicide Registration To 34 Sta…
January 13, 2017
The U.S. EPA has expanded the geography for application of Enlist Duo herbicide from 15 to 34 states. This means Read More
Olson Ag Enterprise
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Acquires Nebraska Seed Retailer
January 13, 2017
Wilbur-Ellis’ Agribusiness, a recognized leader in precision agriculture technology and the distribution and marketing of plant protection, seed and nutritional Read More
ManagementDeere-Precision Planting Update and the Ag Secretary Wa…
January 12, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj provide the latest on the court date for John Deere/Precision Planting and the quest Read More
Monsanto sign
Seed/BiotechMonsanto, NRGene Form Agreement For Big Data Genomic An…
January 12, 2017
Monsanto Co. and NRGene have announced that the companies have reached a non-exclusive, multi-year global licensing agreement on NRGene’s genome-analysis Read More
AGCO Custom applicator
SprayersAGCO, Asmark Institute To Offer Training For Beginning …
January 11, 2017
AGCO Corp. and the Asmark Institute are collaborating to offer a new training program dedicated to educating and developing custom Read More