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Letter to Colleague


Location: Unknown

Dear Colleague,

The Environmental Protection Agency is out of control, especially when it comes to proposed regulations that would affect our farmers and ranchers.

EPA's regulatory approach shows a lack of understanding for American agriculture. The agency claims to be committed to operating in an open and transparent manner but producers don't see it. Mainly because in its Endangerment Finding, the EPA has concluded that carbon dioxide and methane are dangerous pollutants and should be regulated under the Clean Air Act.

During a recent Agriculture Committee hearing, the EPA Administrator said agriculture is currently exempt from proposed regulations because EPA has targeted only the largest greenhouse gas emitters. Unfortunately this does not provide any certainty to our farmers and ranchers.

It does not help that EPA is sending mixed messages. In a recent interview Lisa Jackson was quoted as saying that the EPA will begin looking at regulating greenhouse gases from farms as soon as 2013, which seems counter to her remarks at the hearing.

Even if farmers and ranchers are exempt from additional regulations they will still pay a price from the higher energy and operating costs they'll face from other industries hit by these regulations or from further regulations down the road. Whether it's the fuel in the tractor, the fertilizer for the crops or the delivery of food to the grocery store, the cost of providing safe, affordable and reliable food and fiber will increase.

This is the last thing our economy needs.

That is why we cosponsored H.R. 910, the Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011 which is slated for a vote in the House of Representatives this week. The bill would prevent the EPA from subjecting our producers to more burdensome regulations that threaten to put them out of business.

We urge our colleagues to join us in passing H.R. 910, the Energy Tax Prevention Act and protect agriculture from EPA overreach.

Frank D. Lucas, Chairman
House Agriculture Committee

Collin C. Peterson, Ranking Member
House Agriculture Committee

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