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Renewable Vibes > News > Sustainable Living > Lawmakers within the MGP are suggesting the adoption of Washington’s sustainable farming program as a model to follow.

Lawmakers within the MGP are suggesting the adoption of Washington’s sustainable farming program as a model to follow.

A group of lawmakers from Washington have introduced federal legislation that aims to replicate a successful state program that encourages voluntary conservation on farms. The Partnerships for Agricultural Climate Action (PACA) Act of 2024, introduced by Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, D-Skamania, along with Reps. Kim Schrier and Marilyn Strickland, would replicate Washington’s Sustainable Farms and Fields program if passed.

Gluesenkamp Perez stated that small farmers in Southwest Washington are facing increasingly difficult growing conditions, and there should not be high barriers to improving climate resiliency and soil health. She believes that the PACA Act would help producers protect their operations from extreme weather, stay competitive, and reduce emissions in ways that make sense for their bottom line.

According to Gluesenkamp Perez, the bill would allow local partners, states, and tribes to expedite access to resources for producers who are reducing emissions, enhancing soil carbon storage, and improving resilience to extreme weather. It would also enable local, state, and tribal entities and partnerships to direct climate action in ways that are regionally relevant and appropriate for local operations. Additionally, the bill would support first-time, low-income, and minority farmers by providing technical and financial assistance.

Schrier expressed her support for the bill, stating that supporting the agricultural community is a top priority for her. She believes that the PACA Act will help growers voluntarily strengthen their climate resiliency, contribute to climate solutions, stay in business, and improve their bottom line.

The bill has received support from various organizations, including the Northwest Dairy Association/Darigold, the Washington State Potato Commission, the Washington Association of Wheat Growers, the Washington State Conservation Commission, the Washington State Farm Bureau, Carbon180, and Carbon Washington.

Matt Harris, director of governmental affairs at the Washington State Potato Commission, praised the bill for providing resources for voluntary conservation practices that will benefit underserved farm families. He believes that farms, fish, and rural communities will benefit from this innovative legislation.

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