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Mr. PETERSON. Mr. Chairman, I rise today in support of H.R. 910.
We recently held a hearing in the Agriculture Committee with folks from the EPA and from people in agriculture, and the message that we heard was pretty clear from agriculture that they believe the EPA needs to be reined in, not only as regards this bill, but other measures that are being considered within the EPA as well. What this bill will do is hit a pause button on the EPA's current efforts to regulate greenhouse gases, and that's exactly what people in agriculture think we need.
I have traveled the country, all over the country, talking to agriculture producers both in my district and other places, and they are concerned about what they see coming out of this agency, the regulations that they are seeing. And what really concerns them is that the agency does not seem to understand agriculture and, frankly, doesn't seem to want to understand agriculture.
These proposed regulations we're seeing from EPA could potentially get in the way of what agriculture producers are already doing when it comes to conservation of our natural resources. American farmers and ranchers rely on these resources to provide the world's food supply and are committed to preserving them for the next generation.
The EPA claims to be operating in an open and transparent manner, but the agency is sending mixed messages. At the recent hearing that I mentioned earlier, we were told that agriculture is currently exempt from proposed regulations, yet press reports have quoted the administrator since as saying the EPA will begin looking at regulating greenhouse gases from farms as soon as 2013.
If Congress doesn't do something about the regulations being imposed on our farmers, ranchers and rural communities, the economic effects are going to affect everybody in America. We are being asked to feed more and more people not only in this country, but around the world. This kind of legislation, the effect is going to be to make it harder to do that and also to raise the cost on all of the consumers in this country at a time when that's the last thing that we need.
I encourage my colleagues to support H.R. 910.
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