Ag Policy Blog
Chris Clayton DTN Ag Policy Editor

Monday 07/07/14

EPA Chief Headed to Show-Me State

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy is taking a road trip to Missouri later this week to "meet with farmers, stakeholders and agribusiness leaders to discuss Waters of the US, a proposed rule that clarifies and protects our nations’ waters under the Clean Water Act."

McCarthy will hold a press call on Tuesday with a farmer she will visit. She will also give a speech on Thursday to the Kansas City Agribusiness Council.

Joining McCarthy on a call Tuesday will be Bill Heffernan, who EPA describes as a corn and soybean farmer. Heffernan will show McCarthy around on Wednesday at his farm in Rocheport, Mo., to highlight conservation practices.

If McCarthy's goal is to bring production agriculture into the loop or conversation about the waters of the U.S. rule, I am not sure Heffernan will do the trick. Heffernan is a retired rural sociologist in Missouri who has certainly played a significant role in concentrating on sustainability issues and the changing agricultural landscape in rural America. There are entire rural sociology papers on the internet dedicated to the work of the "populist pragmatist." He farms heritage livestock for companies such as Whole Foods.

In other words, Dr. Heffernan isn't your average farmer out there. He will likely do an excellent job telling McCarthy what she wants to hear and see what she wants to see. But that's not exactly going to advance the debate or ease the tensions out there among commercial farmers about the waters of the U.S. proposal. I hope that in this mix of "farmers, stakeholders and agribusiness leaders" that McCarthy intends to visit with in Missouri is broader group of people who can explain their concerns and converse with McCarthy about the potential challenges and risks posed by EPA's proposal.

If McCarthy doesn't take time to visit with members of those general farm and commodity groups that disagree with the agency then it will be a relatively unsuccessful trip. Remember, it's the "Show-Me State."

Chris Clayton can be reached at chris.clayton@dtn.com

Follow him on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN

Posted at 4:02PM CDT 07/07/14 by Chris Clayton
Comments (2)
A retired, sociologist, Not very logical to retire and go farming. I have nothing against doing the best that we can in the ag profession, but I often wonder how many of the enviro influencers could actually make a living producing food.
Posted by Bonnie Dukowitz at 5:29AM CDT 07/08/14
Clearly these new rules overreach 5th amendment rights along with overstepping congress. Why aren't they meeting with farmers in the "Praire Pothole Region", obviously this is a ploy to stop all drainage in that region with wetland compliance, and now the new EPA rules they will "condemn our cropland". We just celebrated Independence Day, where did the Independence go? Meeting with hobby farmers is a joke and shows how serious they are about listening to our needs. They said when they passed wetland compliance for crop insurance in the farm bill there where only 2 or 3 producers out of compliance in the nation and now where I live since passing there are all time record wetland violations with the signing of a pen but supposedly no rules have changed. Crazy!!! A bill built on lies!!! The EPA step will be the final step in closing drainage, making it impossible to get approvals by overloading you with a time consuming, costly permit process in which they can deny you if they feel like it. Look what's happening with the IRS, VA, EPA, NRCS the list goes on and on. These government should never have this much power or control no matter which party is in power. When they name Czars as heads of these government entities what does that tell you? The word Czar doesn't sound like, justice, liberty, freedom or due process to me, what does it sound like to you?
Posted by Unknown at 8:04AM CDT 07/08/14
Post a Blog Comment:
Your Comment:
DTN reserves the right to delete comments posted to any of our blogs and forums, for reasons including profanity, libel, irrelevant personal attacks and advertisements.
Blog Home Pages
July  2014
S M T W T F S
      1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31      
Subscribe to Ag Policy Blog RSS
Recent Blog Posts
  • CoBank to Lead New Rural Investment Fund
  • USDA Names Research Foundation Board Members
  • Life is a Highway Full of Bumps and Detours
  • AFBF not Impressed by EPA Reaction to Ag Concerns
  • Bumper Crop 2014 Crop Would Put ARC in Spotlight
  • House Continues to Wrestle with Waters of the United States
  • White House Opposes Bonus Depreciation Bill
  • Amendments Blocked on Sportsmen's Bill
  • McCarthy Hint on Direction of RFS?
  • EPA Chief Headed to Show-Me State
  • Nebraskans Question FSA Livestock Disaster Payment Formula
  • Finding My Kicks on Route 66
  • Ag Leaders Question Next Steps on Immigration Reform
  • Business Groups Want Quick Action on COOL
  • Conservation Agriculture: Moon Shot or Forced Change is Coming
  • Talks Continue Over Brazilian Cotton Payments
  • Rupert Murdoch: Congress Should Act on Immigration Reform
  • EU Ready to Save TTIP from Agriculture
  • Thune Seeks CRP Changes
  • Mississippi Senate Runoff Battle Pits Farmers v Club for Growth