Dairy Business Association: Dairy group applauds bipartisan support for water quality credit clearinghouse

Contact: Jamie Mara, director of public relations
Dairy Business Association
(920) 209-3990 | jmara@dairyforward.com

State Senate unanimously OKs centralized nutrient trading system

GREEN BAY, Wis. — The Dairy Business Association today commended state senators for their bipartisan support of a streamlined process for trading pollution-reduction credits that would improve the quality of water in Wisconsin’s rivers and lakes.

Senate Bill 91 would create a clearinghouse for such trades between point sources and non-point sources of phosphorous, nitrates and other pollutants. While state law already allows for this type of trading, a centralized system would make this an easier process and likely more popular.

This bill was authored and introduced by Sen. Rob Cowles, R-Green Bay, and co-sponsored by more than 40 legislators from both sides of the aisle. It was approved unanimously today and now moves to the state Assembly. It would require Gov. Tony Evers’ signature as well to become law.

The following statement is from Tom Crave, president of the Dairy Business Association:

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“This marks a big step forward for Wisconsin, which has a unique opportunity to create a sustainable statewide market that pays for better non-point source pollution reduction through use of new technologies, more cost-effective permit compliance for our manufacturers and industries, and improved water quality.“As an organization whose members — dairy farmers of all sizes and supporting businesses throughout the state — serve as the backbone of our rural economy, we particularly appreciate the ways in which this bill could provide rural job creation and new economic opportunities.

“It is well known that we face difficult economic times in the dairy community and other aspects of agriculture. This bill would help to address this problem while also helping us tackle water quality challenges. DBA looks forward to the continued vetting of this proposal in the Assembly.”

About nutrient trading:

Various entities, including local water treatment facilities, cheese plants and other factories are required to meet limits for what pollutants or nutrients they can discharge to the environment. Phosphorus is one of the most commonly regulated nutrients. It can be expensive for a facility to filter its discharge sufficiently to reach its assigned phosphorus target.

At the same time, there are environmental organizations and farmers who can implement innovative farming techniques or land use changes that reduce the amount of phosphorus in a watershed. They can sell credits from the phosphorus reductions they achieve and other entities can buy them to offset the amount of phosphorus they need to remove from their waste streams.

Photos:

Click here for a photo of Tom Crave. 

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Dairy Business Association @DairyForward applauds state Senate’s bipartisan approval of #water quality credit clearinghouse. #NutrientTrading #innovation #solutions

About DBA:

The Dairy Business Association, based in Green Bay, is a nonprofit organization comprised of Wisconsin dairy farmers, milk processors, vendors and business partners who work to ensure that Wisconsin dairy farmers of all sizes have the support they need to thrive in the state’s economy, communities and food supply chain. The association’s core work is advocating for sensible state laws and regulations that affect the dairy community. For more information, visit www.dairyforward.com.

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