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USDA, EPA expand methane program for farmers

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

A program to help ranchers capture methane is being expanded.
A program to help ranchers capture methane is being expanded.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency recently entered into an agreement that may be of interest to those who use farm equipment.

The agreement expands the AgStar program, which works to reduce methane emissions from livestock operations. Through the departments' efforts, as much as $3.9 million will be made available in the next five years to help farmers try and collect methane gas, which can be used as an alternative fuel.

"The farms and ranches that dot our countryside can contribute greatly to addressing America's long-term energy challenges and the partnership we are announcing today will not only help generate renewable energy, but provide new income opportunities for farmers and ranchers," Agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack said.

The program is one of many attempts by the Obama administration to reduce the country's greenhouse emissions. More recently, however, the government has been dealing with the environmental concerns posed by the destruction of an oil rig off the southern coast of the country.

President Barack Obama recently visited the Gulf Coast and toured the area that could be affected by the BP oil spill.ADNFCR-2034-ID-19757246-ADNFCR

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