Calls for rural broadband and climate mitigation as pandemic aid hits $24 billion – April 20, 2021

Calls for rural broadband and climate mitigation as pandemic aid hits $ 24 billion

Rural communities “must have access to broadband” to succeed and climate mitigation provides an opportunity for rural jobs, said a letter drafted for House Agriculture Committee approval on Tuesday.

Eliminate time limit on food stamps for ABAWDs, says Center on Budget

The 90-day limit on SNAP benefits for adults who do not work at least 20 hours is punitive and does not create job openings, said the think tank Center on Budget and Policy Priorities on Monday.

Opinion

How farmers can be at the forefront of the climate solution

More than a half century after the first Earth Day, with our planet in worse shape than it’s ever been, the challenge of slowing global warming and the environmental, economic and social devastation underway can sometimes feel like too much — too expensive, too complicated and too politically divisive to overcome. But when we wake up every morning in rural Marion County, Iowa, we aren’t filled with despair. We’re filled with hope in a revolutionary idea: that farmers will help mitigate climate damage if we pay them to make their operations more resilient and sustainable.

Today’s Quick Hits

Civil rights ombudsman: The USDA should create a civil rights ombudsman among reforms to improve the performance of its Office of Civil Rights, such as devoting more resources to investigating complaints, said an issue brief by the Food Law and Policy Clinic. (Harvard Law School)

Drought or megadrought?: Drought covers California again, but some researchers believe the state is more than two decades into a megadrought and recovery will be more difficult because human-caused climate change is adding to its severity. (Los Angeles Times)

Climate gap widens: In two decades, the 13 percentage-point gap between Democrats and Republicans on belief in global warming has widened to 53 percentage points. (Grist)

Stable but trailing: The winter wheat crop, which accounts for the lion’s share of U.S. wheat production, is in the same condition as a week ago, but slightly more of the crop is rated as poor or very poor than a year ago. (USDA)

Cell-based meat for pets: A handful of startup companies are using cell-based meat in pet food, a large market now supplied by food-bearing animals; one uses cells from mice for cat food and cells from rabbits for dog food. (Modern Farmer)

America’s Farm Report