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Conservation Clip List is a weekly collection of articles distributed by NACD that provides our members and partners with the latest news in what's driving conservation. If you have a relevant submission, please contact your NACD Communications Team.
Sonny Perdue Is Trump’s Choice for Agriculture Secretary via The New York Times
President-elect Donald J. Trump selected Sonny Perdue, the former governor of Georgia, to be his secretary of agriculture. Mr. Perdue, who once ran a grain and fertilizer business, was among the first candidates Mr. Trump interviewed for the post. He spent much of his career in the agriculture business before being elected governor and returned to the field in 2011 after leaving office.
High court to decide where WOTUS case should be heard via Agri-Pulse
The Supreme Court will decide whether the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals was right to assert jurisdiction over legal challenges to the “waters of the U.S.” rule. The court decided today to grant a petition seeking review of the 6th Circuit's fractured decision, in which that court narrowly determined that it should adjudicate the numerous WOTUS challenges.
EPA's bee decisions are sweet for growers, but they sting environmentalists via Los Angeles Times
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency backed away from tough restrictions on how pesticides can be used while honeybees are pollinating crops, and it declared that three of the pesticides most closely associated with bee deaths are safe in most applications. Those conclusions are likely to allow growers to keep using the chemicals — which are ingredients in dozens of products — to protect millions of acres of soybeans, corn, cotton, vegetables, fruit, and nuts, including 439,000 acres in California. But the documents were a double disappointment to environmentalists, who say scientific studies support bans or at least enforceable restrictions on the chemicals’ use.
Last year, global warming reached record high temperatures — and if that news feels like déjà vu, you're not going crazy. The planet has now had three consecutive years of record-breaking heat.
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway has tapped Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Okla., to head up the panel's Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry in the 115th Congress. Lucas was chairman of the Agriculture Committee from 2011-2015.
Outlook: Trump Brings Opportunity, Uncertainty to Agribusiness via Bloomberg BNA
The new year is shaping up to be a busy one for agriculture policy makers and stakeholders, with work on a new farm bill beginning, major rulemaking in the pipeline, and an incoming administration that has pledged to roll back regulations across the board. Agriculture Committee Chairmen Rep. Michael Conaway (R-Texas) and Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) both return for another round at the helm of their panels, and both say the upcoming five-year farm bill—the premier agriculture policy tool for the federal government--will be a top priority.
Judge allows fracking rules to move ahead via Washington Examiner
A federal court refused to halt the Obama administration's fracking regulations that restrict the venting and flaring of natural gas and methane from oil and gas wells.
Forests Are a Treasure. But Are They Good Investments? via The New York Times
Trees don’t watch the stock market. Forests keep growing — and potentially increasing their value — even when inflation surges or the market swoons. Big investors, like university endowments and insurance companies, have long allocated money to timberland in places like Oregon’s fir-and-spruce forests, Georgia’s pine plantations, and Appalachia’s hardwood groves.
A federal judge said he won't keep the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from launching a full environmental study of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline's disputed crossing under a Missouri River reservoir in North Dakota.
Pruitt said the EPA serves a critical mission and detailed how the agency under his leadership would take a dramatically different approach than under President Barack Obama. Pruitt's main argument during the start of his hearing has been that the states should have more power within the EPA. Pruitt said on issues of air quality and water quality and inter-state issues, the EPA is particularly necessary.
Tiny Pollinators Need Wildlife Corridors Too via The Atlantic
By designing a connection between two urban habitats known to support native pollinators—a connection that could be built collaboratively by residents and the city, and replicated elsewhere—Bergmann wanted to not only help pollinators, but also challenge people to think differently about conservation. In some ways, the pathway would be similar to wildlife corridors for larger species, but the project wouldn’t necessarily restore or protect habitat; instead, it would design and build it from scratch, in the middle of a landscape long dominated by humans.
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