Saturday, August 29, 2015
1012 C Street  •  Floresville, TX 78114  •  Phone: 830-216-4519  •  Fax: 830-393-3219  • 

WCN Site Search


Lost & Found

*Includes FREE photo online! mywcn.com/lostandfound

VideoLost Shih Tzu male-Golden Brown from CR 320 in Floresville If you have any information please call 210-452-1829 or 832-292-3305

VideoStill missing long hair chihuahua. Near 3rd and 97 please if you see her she is very missed. Call jeri 409-781-3191
More Lost & Found ads ›

Help Wanted

Mixer needed for local bakery In La Vernia TX. At least 2 years minimum experience. Apply in person at 1371 FM 1346 La Vernia TX 78121
Journeyman electrician and apprentice electrician needed, experience necessary. Call 210-885-4101.
More Help Wanted ads ›

Featured Videos





Video Vault ›
You’ve been granted free access to this subscribers only article.

Agriculture Today


Grasslands being converted to cropland at alarming rates




E-Mail this Story to a Friend
Print this Story
October 2, 2013 | 3,946 views | Post a comment

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency released data Sept. 18, reflecting that between 2011 and 2012, more than 398,000 acres (620 square miles, or roughly the size of Houston) of grasslands, forests, and other lands were plowed, cleared, or otherwise converted to cropland.

The USDA’s release of this type of data is believed to be unprecedented, and comes amid an ongoing debate about the severity and causes of ecologically destructive conversion of land to cropland.

“This data shows that conversion of native grasslands is happening outside of the northern Great Plains,” said Julie Sibbing, director, National Wildlife Federation Agriculture and Forest program. “In fact, Nebraska had by far the largest amount of land converted to cropland production, and Texas and Kansas, major grassland states, also had large amounts of land converted to cropland, but would not be covered by the House farm bill language. To protect taxpayers and America’s grasslands, we need a Sodsaver provision that applies uniformly across the country.”

Researchers have previously reported high rates of land conversion, driven by high crop prices in the last few years. Numerous economists and researchers have identified the Renewable Fuels Standard as a key factor behind higher crop prices. For instance, a widely reported study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that 1.3 million acres of grassland and wetland were converted to cropland in the Dakotas, Nebraska, and parts of Minnesota and Iowa between 2006 and 2011 -- land conversion rates that haven’t been seen since before the Dust Bowl.

Indeed, USDA’s data show that Nebraska had more land converted to cropland (54,876 acres) between 2011 and 2012 than any other state. Other Midwest and Plains states topping the list of land conversion include South Dakota, Texas (26,395 acres), Iowa, Kansas, Indiana, and Minnesota. But also in the top ten were Florida, California, and Georgia -- states not often identified with high land-conversion rates.

The USDA data comes as a congressional conference committee will finalize a new Farm Bill. The Senate bill contains a provision called “Sodsaver,” which would help address the rapid loss of native grassland habitats by limiting crop insurance support on croplands converted from virgin grassland. The House has a similar provision, but limits the scope to only parts of five states in the Prairie Pothole Region of the northern Great Plains.
 

Your Opinions and Comments


Be the first to comment on this story!


You must be logged in to post a comment.




Not a subscriber?
Subscriber, but no password?
Forgot password?

Agriculture Today Archives


Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Beef Cattle Management seminar (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Cotton root rot and its symptoms (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Feral hogs, water workshop (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Get acquainted with 4-H event (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Harvey places in top 20 (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Hay & Forage Report (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Livestock Market Reports (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Mobile app for hunting regs (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Registration for cattle conference (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Survey deadline (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Turkey fed to improve Texas grasslands (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Wilson County 4-H Council, Booster meetings, Sept. 2 (August 26, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Anthrax confirmed in equine in Uvalde County (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Deer association: Environmental group deceives deer industry, wildlife community (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Don’t miss your shot! Apply for drawn hunts (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Feral hog management workshop is Sept. 4 (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Hay & Forage Report (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Livestock Market Reports (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Prospects bright for dove season (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Saving tomatoes from the Texas heat (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Siblings make rodeo memories (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. TDA Market Report (August 19, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Chagas disease in South Central Texas (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Eastern equine encephalitis cases reported in Texas (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Hay & Forage Report (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Leaf-dropping is common (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Livestock Market Reports (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. New, stronger El Niño may bring another wet winter (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Pieniazek elected president of ag education leadership (August 12, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. EPA ‘muddies’ Clean Water Act (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Hay & Forage Report (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. It’s a ‘banner’ summer for Payton! (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Lantanas losing luster; mosquitoes a bother (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Livestock Market Reports (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Meuths receive Bronze Merit Award (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Shoot to benefit Don Newbury (August 5, 2015)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. TDA Market Report (August 5, 2015)
August 2015 Gardening Calendar (August 1, 2015)
Coupons ag-right
Drama KidsAllstate & McBride Realtyauto chooserTriple R DC ExpertsHeavenly Touch homeVoncille Bielefeld home

  Copyright © 2007-2015 Wilson County News. All rights reserved. Web development by Drewa Designs.