The National Pork Producers Council has indicated its opposition to climate change legislation, which it said will raise the cost of pork production. The stance was voiced in a letter sent Thursday to House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, D-Minn., and Ranking Member Frank Lucas, R-Okla.
The “American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009,” H.R. 2454, could come up for a vote in the House of Representatives next week. Among other things, the bill would set a limit, or cap, on the amount of greenhouse gases that specific large industries such as energy utilities could release to the atmosphere. A business that has an emissions amount that falls below its cap could sell the unused amount up to the cap as offset credits; one that exceeds its cap would need to buy credits or reduce its emissions.
“America’s pork producers are intensely concerned over any policy proposals that will further raise the cost of production,” said NPPC. “In particular, producers fear the impact that H.R. 2454 will have on the cost of electricity, diesel fuel, grain, propane, animal health products, fertilizer, chemicals, farm equipment and materials such as steel and concrete that are necessary for the continued operations of their farms and well-being of their animals.
“Pork producers are already losing money for every pig sold – currently about $30 per hog – and any additional costs will drive them deeper and more firmly into financial despair.”
NPPC anticipates an increase in energy and input costs of more than 20 percent under the proposed climate change legislation, and it doesn’t believe that revenues from the sale of greenhouse gas offset credits will balance that increase. In addition, the organization is wary of the impact the legislation would have on pork producers’ ability to compete fairly in world export markets.
Read more from NPPC letter.