Growing Climate Solutions Act of 2020: Positive Step Forward for Agriculture and Forests in Agriculture, Energy and Environment

BPC Action commends Sens. Mike Braun (R-IN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) for the introduction of the Growing Climate Solutions Act of 2020. BPC Action supports the efforts in this bill to lower the barriers to entry for farmers and private forest owners to participate in carbon credit markets. We are glad to see congressional support for facilitating land-based carbon removal in agriculture and forestry.

The legislation would establish a new program at the Department of Agriculture to provide technical assistance to farmers and forest landowners looking to implement practices that capture carbon, reduce emissions, improve soil health, and make operations more sustainable. A key goal of this program is to connect landowners with certified private sector actors in two areas: (1) third-party carbon credit verifiers that confirm emissions reductions and carbon storage, and (2) technical assistance providers that work with landowners to design and implement projects that can produce tradeable carbon credits. The bill also requires USDA to submit a report to Congress on further developing this policy area, including recommendations on how the department could further encourage widespread landowner participation in carbon sequestration activities.

BPC Action looks forward to working with Congress to pass this bill that takes an important step forward in unlocking the potential within U.S. agriculture and forestry to serve as a critical climate solution.