Ag groups want to exempt farmers from emissions reporting

Several agricultural groups continue to stress the consequences a proposal from the Securities and Exchange Commission could have on farmers and ranchers.

Travis Cushman with the American Farm Bureau Federation tells Brownfield the proposed rule on climate disclosures meant for publicly traded companies is extremely far-reaching and would especially be difficult for small and medium-sized farms.

“It will make these public companies want to do business with the larger farms that can more easily track this information,” he says.  “It also seems like one of those things that would make it more financially valuable to integrate their value chain.”

Cushman says the SEC expects the compliance costs for just for publicly traded companies to increase by 260 percent and family farms should not bear reporting costs.

“The way this could end up is essentially they’re asking you how many gallons of diesel do you put in your John Deere tractor?—that’s a fear we have,” he says. “What we’ve been trying to do is ask the SEC to either exclude scope 3 emissions from this rule or alternatively exclude agricultural producers.”

Additional comments on the proposal were submitted this week from AFBF along with the Agricultural Retailers Association, American Soybean Association, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Pork Producers Council, and North American Meat Institute.

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