Vilsack Announces Investment Package and Climate Initiative

Cindy Zimmerman

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced a comprehensive set of investments by USDA during a speech at Colorado State University’s Salazar Center’s Virtual International Symposium for Conservation Impact.

Secretary Vilsack announced that USDA is preparing $3 billion in investments that will support drought resilience and response, animal disease prevention, market disruption relief, and purchase of food for school nutrition programs. The support will be made available via the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).

The investments include $500 million to support drought recovery and encourage the adoption of water-smart management practices; up to $500 million to prevent the spread of African Swine Fever (ASF); $500 million to provide relief from agricultural market disruption; and $1.5 billion to help schools respond to supply chain disruptions.

He also announced a new initiative to finance the deployment of climate-smart farming and forestry practices to aid in the marketing of climate-smart agricultural commodities. USDA will support a set of pilot projects that provide incentives to implement climate smart conservation practices on working lands and to quantify and monitor the carbon and greenhouse gas benefits associated with those practices. The pilots could rely on the Commodity Credit Corporation’s specific power to aid in expansion or development of new and additional markets.

Vilsack announcements Colorado State University 34:00

Audio, USDA