State

EPA’s involvement in What’s Upstream ran deep

From the Capital Press A little more than a month ago, What’s Upstream was an obscure political advocacy campaign backed by Environmental Protection Agency money, a Washington state Indian tribe and a handful of environmental groups. Today, the campaign has been condemned by one-third of the U.S. House as an attack on agriculture, and the inspector general of the EPA ... Read More »

Washington legislators send letter to FSA administrator

Two Washington legislators, Rep. Dan Newhouse and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, recently sent a letter to Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Val Dolcini asking for his help in resolving an issue with the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and its delay in the release of participation data. That delay, the legislators say, can significantly impact growing decisions for farmers in the driest ... Read More »

NASS crop progress report April 25

For the week ending April 24 Warmer temperatures give Washington producers a foreseeable good crop year There were 6.5 days suitable for work. Pasture conditions were reported as 0% very poor, 0 % poor, 23% fair, 67% good and 10% excellent. Temperatures throughout the state ranged from 33 degrees Fahrenheit in the central region to 90 degrees Fahrenheit in the ... Read More »

House members write to EPA demanding explanation

From the National Association of Wheat Growers The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has admitted that the Washington state billboards blaming farmers for pollution to waterways should never have been funded, but U.S. House members are now inquiring as to why the EPA funded the whatsupstream.com website, violating federal laws regarding lobbying and advocacy funds. Following the revelation that the EPA has ... Read More »

USDA official meets with Washington wheat growers

In a roundtable discussion earlier this week, USDA Deputy Under Secretary Alexis Taylor met with a group of wheat growers in Ritzville to discuss trade and other programs. As deputy under secretary, Taylor oversees the Foreign Ag Service, Farm Service Agency and Risk Management Agency. Taylor emphasized the importance of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), explaining it is their number one ... Read More »

145 House members sign letter criticizing EPA over What’s Upstream

From the Capital Press One-third of the U.S. House on Wednesday accused the Environmental Protection Agency of breaking federal prohibitions against political advocacy by funding What’s Upstream. Three Democrats and 142 Republicans signed a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, stating that EPA’s support for the campaign maligns farmers, violates limits on the agency’s spending authority and exhibits a pattern ... Read More »

NASS crop progress report April 18

For the week ending April 17 Higher temperatures lead to more field work in Washington There were 6.0 days suitable for work. Pasture conditions were reported as 0% very poor, 0 % poor, 30% fair, 65% good and 5% excellent. Temperatures throughout the state ranged from the 28 degrees to 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures were warmer than usual for this ... Read More »

U.S. House members urge union, ports to cooperate

From the Capital Press Nine members of Congress, led by Washington Reps. Dan Newhouse and Dave Reichert, are urging the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association to find ways to prevent port disruptions. A work slowdown crippled container exports in 2014 and 2015. At a conference in Long Beach, Calif., at the end of February, the ... Read More »

April 13 stripe rust update

By Xianming Chen On April 7, I was checking wheat fields in Whitman, Garfield, Walla Walla and Franklin counties of Washington and Umatilla County of Oregon. Winter wheat ranged from Feekes 4 to 8 and was generally in good condition. Stripe rust was found in several fields of Garfield, Franklin and Walla Walla counties in low prevalence and severity. In ... Read More »

EPA mum as What’s Upstream stays afloat

From the Capital Press An Environmental Protection Agency funded media campaign to change how Washington state regulates agriculture remained largely intact Tuesday, one week after the agency said the campaign misused EPA funds and that it was taking corrective action. What’s Upstream, a partnership between the Swinomish Indian tribe and environmental groups, has maintained a website, letter-writing campaign, Facebook page ... Read More »