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Opening Statement of Ranking Member John Boozman at Business Meeting to Consider S. 1251, the Growing Climate Solutions Act of 2021

WASHINGTON— U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR), Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, released the following opening remarks, as prepared, from the business meeting to consider S. 1251, the Growing Climate Solutions Act of 2021:

Thank you Chairwoman Stabenow and Senator Braun for your work to develop the Growing Climate Solutions Act.

There has certainly been a lot of stakeholder interest in this legislation, which I have a great appreciation for, as farmers, ranchers and private forest land owners are increasingly seeking opportunities in voluntary greenhouse gas credit markets.

Many farmers are excited about this emerging opportunity. They need information to determine if this is an opportunity that may suit their business and be a viable income stream.

One of the challenges farmers, ranchers and private forest landowners face in entering these markets is knowing where to find the expertise to assist them in implementing practices that sequester carbon or reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and how to verify and quantify the benefits of these practices.

The Growing Climate Solutions Act will help address this challenge. It will give farmers, ranchers and foresters a resource at USDA to learn more about the voluntary opportunities they may wish to pursue.

This bill will not open the farm bill or cannibalize funding from our farm bill programs. It has privacy protections for farmer information and against conflicts of interest. And it requires that a majority of the program’s advisory council be made up of farmers, ranchers and private forest landowners.

I offer my sincere thanks and gratitude to Senators Braun and Stabenow for their willingness to partner with me to make these and other important improvements to the bill. We are continuing the long standing tradition that is expected of the agriculture committee to develop practical, bipartisan policy.

I look forward to working with you and our stakeholders as this legislation advances through the Senate.