By United States Government Accountability Office
The nation's last grassland has numerous vital advantages, comparable to delivering land for grazing and flora and fauna habitat for lots of at-risk species. despite the fact that, over the last three centuries approximately 1/2 the grassland has been switched over to different makes use of, largely cropland. as well as wasting vital grassland values, such conversions may end up in elevated spending on federal farm courses, similar to crop assurance, particularly in marginal components. This ebook examines: the level of grassland conversions to cropland and the price of farm software funds for those newly switched over cropland acres; the relative value of farm application funds as opposed to different components in manufacturers' judgements to transform grassland to cropland; and, any influence the Sodbuster conservation provision - which areas soil erosion criteria on yes switched over land - has had on restricting grassland conversions. This ebook is an excerpted and edited version.
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Extra resources for Agricultural Conservation: Converting Grassland to Cropland
Available data suggest that USDA’s programs that increase the profitability of cropping and its programs that encourage conservation of rural land may be working at cross purposes with one another. Specifically, some conservation programs, such as CRP, provide incentives for conversions of cropland to grassland, while farm program payments may have the unintended consequence of providing incentives for conversions of grassland to cropland. Such apparent inconsistency undermines USDA’s conservation goals and the most effective use of funds.
Nevertheless, this analysis demonstrates that there have been economic incentives for producers, at least in the short run, to shift into crop production on native grassland. It also illustrates the importance of farm program payments in years of lower crop prices or yields. Appendix IV provides more information on our partial budget analysis. In addition to our partial budget analysis, several economic studies we reviewed found that farm program payments influence producers’ conversion decisions because they increase the expected profitability of cropping land while lowering the risks.
B Corn prices for 2003 through 2006 are yearly averages of weekly cash prices in central South Dakota from the South Dakota State University extension grain marketing service. Corn prices for 2007 are average weekly cash prices for the Central South Dakota region from January to July 2007, from South Dakota State University extension service. c Corn yields for 2007 are a moving average of NASS county yields, adjusted for soil productivity. d For 2003 through 2006, calf prices are November South Dakota stocker cattle prices, monthly average, obtained from South Dakota State University’s “Cattle Market Review,” June 22, 2007, for 500 to 600 pound steers.
Agricultural Conservation: Converting Grassland to Cropland by United States Government Accountability Office