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Conferencing Conservation: Reviewing Title II of the House and Senate Farm Bills

With passage of their respective farm bills, the House and Senate are taking the formal steps to form the conference committee and begin negotiations to complete the legislative process.  Among the many differences that the conference committee will need to resolve are those involving the conservation programs in Title II of each bill. The conservation […]

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The risks that U.S. fuel Industry is facing under the background of climate change: in the form of a slump in fuel price

Introduction Climate change, exhibited as global warming and frequent extreme weather events, has a great impact on our world, including the U.S. fuel Industry. Recently, there has been a debate between the energy industry and public about whether or not we should price the risk from climate change in the energy production industry. According to […]

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How much can the Sodsaver Provision in the 2014 Farm Bill save sod? It depends on crop prices.

Established in the 2008 Farm Bill and re-authorized in the 2014 Farm Bill, the Sodsaver Provision aims to dis-incentivize converting native grassland to cropland by restricting crop insurance coverage or premium subsidy to cropland that is newly converted from native sod.  We recently published a study in the Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics that […]

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Linkage between Federal Crop Insurance Program and the Conservation Reserve Program: Implications for Budgetary Outlays and Environmental Efficiency

We recently published a study in Land Economics that reveals a potentially significant overlooked budgetary cost savings by linking the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) with the Federal Crop Insurance Program (FCIP). To explain, we will first briefly describe the two programs. Established in 1985, the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) involves federal government contracts with farmers […]

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To Harvest Stover or Not: Is it Worth it?

Corn stover is a readily available source of biomass for the production of biofuels. Three U.S. refineries – Poet, Abengoa and Dupont – are converting it at commercial scale to biofuel. These biofuel facilities partner and contract with farmers to procure the stover feedstock used in processing. Farmers face a choice of whether or not […]

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Questioning the Final RFS Rule, Part 3: Reasonableness of the Interpretation

Today’s article completes the discussion of EPA’s final rule for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Parts one and two in this series provided background on the RFS, a general review of the final rule and questioned EPA’s definition of the word ‘supply.’ This article delves into whether EPA’s interpretation in general can be considered reasonable […]

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Questioning the Final RFS Rule, Part 2: the Meaning of the Word “Supply”

This article continues the discussion of EPA’s final rule for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The previous article in this series provided background on the RFS and a general review of the final rule. This article looks specifically at EPA’s interpretation of the word “supply” in the waiver provision “inadequate domestic supply” and what Congress […]

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Questioning the Final RFS Rule, Part 1: the Rule and Background

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently published the final rule that establishes the volume requirements for calendar years 2014, 2015, and 2016 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Previous discussions about EPA’s arguments for use of the general waiver authority in the RFS statute reviewed a leaked version of the proposed rule and the proposed […]

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