Earlier this week, the Midwest Row Crop Collaborative sent a letter to Iowa leaders addressing the need for water quality funding. MRCC is made up of non-profit organizations and businesses focusing on improving water quality in Iowa, Nebraska, and Illinois.
A non-profit organization involved with MRCC is The Nature Conservancy. Isis Stark is Senior Policy Advisor at TNC.
“The letter didn’t advocate for specific legislation but lawmakers in Iowa are currently grappling with a series of proposals to support the state’s nutrient reduction strategy. This letter was a collaborative effort to try to give input on what we think would be the best type of final compromise they pass this session or in the near future.”
The letter was sent to Iowa lawmakers, Governor Terry Branstad, and Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey. Stark says the collaborative says they understand farmers are participating in conservation practices and would like to see more.
“As a collaboration, we are trying to ensure substantial increases in conservation over the next nine or so years,” Stark says.
Stark says their goal is to have 45 percent nutrient reduction by 2035 of the Gulf Hypoxia.
“It is new for us to be working together in such a big effort and so it is a very big deal.”
Members of MRCC include: General Mills, Kellogg, Cargill, Monsanto, Wal Mart, Pepsi, Unilever, and Land O’ Lakes, the Environmental Defense Fund, The World Wildlife Fund and The Nature Conservancy.