Posts By: Brian DeVore, Land Stewardship Project

Dayton’s Veto Was Right Decision for Rural Minnesota

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Clean Water, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By Loretta Jaus Last Thursday I traveled from my dairy farm in Sibley County to the Governor’s Mansion in Saint Paul. I wanted to be with other Minnesotans who were gathered there to let Gov. Mark Dayton know that House File 846 was bad for Minnesota, especially rural Minnesota. Many provisions favoring corporate polluters and… Read more »

Buffer Initiative: It Will Help Protect Water & is Flexible Enough to Meet Farmer Needs

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Clean Water, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Land Conservation, Loon Commons blog, Water.

By George Boody Governor Mark Dayton announced in January his proposal to require an additional 125,000 acres of perennial vegetation along lakes, rivers and streams. There is a long history of utilizing such living borders to filter out fertilizers and herbicides, while fortifying streambanks and reducing the amount of eroded soil that ends up in… Read more »

Frac Sand’s Wild Refugees

Posted by & filed under agriculture, clean energy future, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Land Conservation, Loon Commons blog, oil, Wildlife.

By Johanna Rupprecht, Land Stewardship Project There’s a farm near the Jackson County, Wis., community of Hixton that is in the process of being destroyed by being turned into a frac sand mine. I would say it’s a least a couple of hundred acres. It’s at the intersection of Highway 95 and Green (but not… Read more »

Forever Green: Relaying Resiliency

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Clean Water, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Land Conservation, Loon Commons blog, Water.

To Matthew Ott, three words could make all the difference as to whether farming systems that protect the soil year-round in Minnesota become a consistent agricultural presence in the state. “For me, the most exciting thing is to be able to use the term, ‘cash cover crops,’ ” says the University of Minnesota graduate student…. Read more »

Why an EIS for Riverview Baker Dairy? Too Little Water, Too Much Manure

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Clean Water, Environmental Review - Defense, EQB and Environmental Review, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Groundwater management, Loon Commons blog, Water.

When Renville County dairy farmer James Kanne addressed a Minnesota Senate hearing on environmental review Jan. 29, he made it clear that size does matter when it comes to assessing the impact of an agricultural operation on the land and community. “If you have 50 cows in one spot, they have a small impact,” Kanne… Read more »

Crop Insurance: Let the New Generation of Farmers In

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By Jim VanDerPol The Land Stewardship Project recently published a three-part expose of the federal crop insurance program. The white papers are titled: “Crop Insurance-the Corporate Connection,” “Crop Insurance Ensures the Big Get Bigger” and “How Crop Insurance Hurts the Next Generation of Farmers.” The final paper title provides the key to LSP’s concern. The… Read more »

A Little Dirty History

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Land Conservation, Loon Commons blog.

The United Nations-Food and Agriculture Organization has declared 2015 the International Year of Soils. That’s fitting, given how reliant the entire world is on keeping our soil in place, as well as keeping it healthy. But this isn’t exactly new information: years ago I happened upon a 1953 pamphlet called Conquest of the Land Through… Read more »

Crop Insurance: Good Enough for Monsanto-Good Enough for Sustainable Ag

Posted by & filed under agriculture, federal policy, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

From the fact-is-stranger-than-fiction department: In 2007, Monsanto talked the USDA’s Risk Management Agency into giving farmers a discount on crop insurance premiums if they planted the company’s triple-stacked GMO corn. Reportedly, some reviewers of the proposal raised concerns that the premium subsidy would unfairly benefit a single private company. But in the end, the USDA… Read more »

Continuous Learning About Continuous Living Cover

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog, Water.

When it comes to introducing and supporting innovative sustainable farming practices, nothing beats a field day. Such events provide an opportunity for farmers to see firsthand how profitable, environmentally sound production practices are performing on their neighbor’s land under climatic, agronomic and economic conditions they can relate to. Studies have shown that while sustainable farming… Read more »

In Historical Move, MPCA Orders EIS on Proposed Factory Farm

Posted by & filed under agriculture, EQB and Environmental Review, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By Paul Sobocinski, Land Stewardship Project The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s Citizens’ Board ruled this week that Riverview LLP’s proposed 8,850-cow dairy operation in Stevens County must undergo an in-depth Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). To my knowledge, this is the first time that the MPCA has ordered an EIS of a factory farm. This is… Read more »