Crockett, Molinaro introduce EMIT LESS Act to reduce agricultural carbon emissions

Congresswoman Jasmine Crockett (TX-30) and Congressman Marc Molinaro (NY-19) introduced the Enteric Methane Innovation Tools for Lower Emissions and Sustainable Stock (EMIT LESS) Act.

June 12, 2024

6 Min Read

Congresswoman Jasmine Crockett (TX-30) and Congressman Marc Molinaro (NY-19) introduced the Enteric Methane Innovation Tools for Lower Emissions and Sustainable Stock (EMIT LESS) Act, legislation that would mitigate the negative environmental impacts of enteric methane by empowering the USDA to quantify the environmental benefits of products and practices that reduce enteric methane emissions, while also creating voluntary incentives through conservation programs to ease their adoption by producers. Crockett and Molinaro are both members of the House Agriculture Committee and are advancing the legislation in hopes of promoting its adoption into the bicameral version of the Farm Bill when it comes to conference later this year. 

Specifically, the EMIT LESS Act would: 

  • Create enteric methane product and practice testing capacity through USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS)

  • Establish and expand training programs that familiarize farmers and ranchers with practices that reduce enteric methane emissions

  • Add practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including enteric methane, under USDA's Conservation Innovation Grant’s On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials

  • Direct USDA to review conservation practice standards that can assist in reducing enteric methane, revise those as needed, and establish any appropriate new standards

  • Amend USDA’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) to provide financial incentives for farmers and ranchers to voluntarily use products and implement practices that reduce enteric methane

You can view the bill text here or view a one-pager of the EMIT LESS Act here

“From an ice-cold glass of milk to freshly churned ice cream, farm-fresh cheese to a rare steak, American beef and dairy is the best on planet Earth – but for decades, that excellence has come at a high emission cost to our environment. With the introduction of our EMIT Less Act, we have the potential to expand the use of low-emission cattle feed and reduce the environmental cost of grazing without spiking costs for farmers and producers already under strain from overseas competition with poor environmental standards," said Rep. Crockett. "In a divided Congress, I am grateful to work alongside my Freshman colleague Rep. Molinaro to advance this bill with support from both producers and conservationists. This legislation is proof that putting farmers and ranchers first doesn’t mean putting the environment last!”

“I’m a conservationist. Incentivizing dairy farmers to implement clean and efficient energy practices will further our cause and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions," said Rep. Molinaro. "I'm proud to deliver for the dairy industry and protect our environment alongside Rep. Crockett."

“The Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance (FACA) commends Representatives Crockett and Molinaro for supporting farmers and ranchers’ voluntary efforts to reduce methane emissions from ruminant livestock. The bipartisan EMIT LESS Act will bolster ongoing, farmer-led efforts to address enteric methane emissions and support research on the efficiency and environmental benefits associated with novel feed additives,” said the Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance (FACA).

"Developing new solutions to reduce methane emissions from livestock supports the long established and continuing journey of sustainability for farmers and ranchrs, and will give them the tools to mitigate climate change. The EMIT LESS Act has the potential to accelerate the development and adoption of these tools and strategies. We thank Representatives Crockett and Molinaro for their leadership on this consequential bill, and we look forward to the innovation it will create," said Charles Brooke, Program Lead, Livestock Enteric Methane Mitigation, Spark Climate Solutions.“Innovative feed ingredients will help U.S. dairy farmers bolster their already robust voluntary environmental stewardship efforts. But they will need resources and support as they start using approved enteric methane-reducing feed additives. We commend Representatives Jasmine Crockett, D-TX, and Marc Molinaro, R-NY, for introducing the bipartisan EMIT LESS Act, which would better tailor USDA voluntary conservation programs to sustainable on-farm feed management,” said Gregg Doud, President and CEO, National Milk Producers Federation.“New technologies and practices will play a key role in enabling U.S. beef and dairy producers to both reduce enteric methane emissions and increase the productivity of their operations. The EMIT LESS Act will provide much-needed support for research on emerging solutions with potential to reduce enteric methane, without compromising animal health or safety, and empower producers to implement voluntary on-farm emission reduction strategies. We commend Representatives Crockett and Molinaro for their bipartisan leadership on this legislation that will bolster the long-term sustainability and profitability of animal agriculture," said David Hong, Washington Director at the Breakthrough Institute.“I would like to thank Congresswoman Crockett and Congressman Molinaro for introducing the EMIT LESS act. This bill is needed and will allow our nation’s livestock producers to be better positioned to compete in the global climate economy. This bill empowers USDA to direct resources to voluntary livestock practices that have incredible potential to reduce GHG emissions and increase profitability for our nation’s livestock producers," said Chuck Conner, President & CEO, National Council of Farmer Cooperatives.“Reducing enteric methane emissions from livestock is one of the most urgently needed climate solutions, and the EMIT LESS Act will advance climate-smart livestock production by providing financial incentives, technical assistance and research to farmers seeking innovative new tools for their operations. The EMIT LESS Act will set U.S. farms and ranches up for success now and into the future, and we thank Rep. Crockett for her leadership on this issue," said Andrew Lentz, Director of Federal Affairs, Agriculture Policy, Environmental Defense Fund.“Currently, farmers have limited options to reduce enteric emissions. This important legislation supports research and development of technologies, practices to close this gap across different production systems, and rapid implementation by farmers. The more technologies that are available to farmers, the more opportunities they have to access important revenue streams such as carbon markets, further accelerating reduction in enteric methane emissions," said Clean Air Task Force.“We appreciate Representatives Crockett and Molinaro for introducing a bipartisan bill that enhances our nation's agricultural research and conservation efforts while acknowledging the critical role that animal nutrition and innovative feed ingredients play in lowering on-farm enteric methane emissions. The EMIT LESS Act demonstrates our country's commitment to investing in a more sustainable future alongside animal food innovators," said Constance Cullman, President and CEO, American Feed Industry Association. “The EMIT LESS Act will support the adoption of science-based enteric methane reduction products and practices within the dairy supply chain that help U.S. dairy processors meet their ambitious emissions reduction commitments. IDFA is grateful to Reps. Crockett and Molinaro for leading this effort to provide farmers and ranchers with safe and effective technologies that will help ensure the voluntary, incentive-based U.S. approach to reducing emissions in the food and beverage industry is successful," said Michael Dykes, D.V.M., president and CEO, International Dairy Foods Association. “Danone is taking action to reduce methane emissions in our fresh milk supply by 30% by 2030. We are investing in farming partners to support and increase implementation of regenerative agriculture practices and innovative technologies that address methane from enteric fermentation. Reducing livestock methane emissions is vital for mitigating climate change, alongside efforts in decreasing carbon dioxide emissions. We thank Rep. Crockett and the co-sponsors of this important bi-partisan legislation for prioritizing funding and training necessary to help U.S. agricultural producers accelerate the deployment of new tools necessary to mitigating methane,” said Pat Maloney, Director of Government and Industry Affairs, Danone North America.

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