Iowans Embarking on Water Conservation

Water conservation in Iowa

Saving Water in Iowa Going Well

Karl Brooks, Region 7 Administrator for the Environmental Protection Agency, praised Iowa for their practical investments into water health and soil productivity. This is seen in the millions of state dollars which have been spent on water conservation practices such as no-till and cover crops, which are part of the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy. However, Brooks would like to see such initiatives funded on a more long-term basis rather than as one-time only funding projects.

“The big challenge ahead of us now, is to spread these practices so that more and more producers adopt them, and then to be able to measure so we can prove out these different practices. I suppose most Iowans would say, ‘If I’m going to plug $25 million into a water pollution control plan, I’d like to see some facts and figures showing that it works for me’ and so that’ll really be the next frontier. Is measuring, documenting and making changes along the way.”

Brooks is confident that leaders in Iowa will be able to understand the payoff of water conservation for the long haul.

“In the meantime, let’s make these practices spread, let’s see how they work. Then you can go back to the legislature. I used to be a state legislator; I know money doesn’t grow on trees.” He says, “I suppose that Secretary Northey, Director Gipp can go back in to a future legislator and show that these practices are working. The legislator may be able to come up with a variety of different approaches.”

Iowa Soybean Growers Off to China

A group representing the Iowa Soybean Association have embarked on a 9-day trip to China. Their goal is to develop a better relationship with the agricultural giant as well as to forge a consumer preference for Iowa soybeans. Chinese farmers are not as motivated to grow soybeans as they are to grow corn due to a lack of oilseed subsidies from their government. Therefore China imports much of their soybean supply. The hope is that as a result of this trip that Chinese food producers will turn towards Iowa for their soybean supply.

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