April 18, 2014

North Dakota Congressman Cramer To Host Farm Bill Seminar

Congressman Kevin Cramer announced he will bring two senior staff members of the House Agriculture Committee to Fargo for a public Farm Bill seminar and question-and-answer session. Matt Schertz, senior professional staff member, and Bart Fischer, chief economist of the Committee, will answer questions on the implementation of the 2014 Farm Bill for agriculture representatives, crop insurance agents, and the public.

“Since the farm bill was signed into law, many agriculture professionals have questions on how it is being implemented. With the expanded crop insurance options presented in the new Farm Bill, farmers are confronted with decisions which will have multi-year consequences. In bringing to North Dakota two of the experts most involved in drafting and negotiating the Farm Bill, my hope is to provide answers and guidance,” said Cramer.

Event details are below:

Friday, May 2

 Seminar and Q&A Session with Senior Agriculture Committee Staff

10:00am to 12:00pm

Auditorium, Room 100

1305 19th Ave North



Renewable Energy Recognized as Factor in Mitigating Climate Change

Over the weekend – an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a summary of its report for policymakers titled Climate Change 2014 – Mitigation of Climate Change – which is being released today. 25x’25 reports the summary says global emissions of greenhouse gases have risen to unprecedented levels – despite a growing number of policies to reduce climate change. In fact – between 2000 and 2010 – those emissions grew more quickly than in each of the three previous decades. The study also shows carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel combustion and industrial processes contributed nearly 78-percent of the total GHG emission increase from 1970 to 2010.

However – the report notes many renewable energy technologies have demonstrated performance improvements and cost reductions. According to the report – renewed investment in the kinds of renewable energy advocated by 25x’25 can bring about the desired outcome of limiting the global mean temperature two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The panel says sustainability of production practices and the efficiency of those practices are issues to consider – but that bioenergy can play a critical role for mitigating climate change.


Could Corn Carryout Still Shrink?

When the corn planters roll in force across the Midwest this spring - their owners will be far more optimistic than just a few months ago. Late in December the market for corn looked to be truly tanking. However - demand for the grain has been strong - and it looks to stay strong enough to use up the better part of a big crop harvested last fall. Strong demand has caused USDA to lower the projected number of leftover bushels down for five months running – notes University of Illinois Ag Economist Darrel Good…

Darrel Good 1

Compared to usage projections made in November - current projections are 100-million bushels larger for corn used for ethanol production - 350-million bushels larger for exports - and 100-million bushels larger in the feed and residual category. It leaves about 1.35-billion bushels in the bin. That’s called the carry out or the ending stocks figure and impacts how much corn USDA will project to be left in the bin 18 months from now – too. . .

Darrel Good 2
The whole thing is a moving target - but right now it appears to be pointing to a bit higher season’s average cash corn price for this year - and one next year that could be about the same. Both of those figures are higher than would have been projected late last fall.