USDA Observes Dairy Greenhouse Gas Agreement Anniversary

Cindy Zimmerman

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today commemorated the one year anniversary of the agreement to help U.S. dairy producers cut greenhouse gas emissions that was signed on this date during climate change talks in Copenhagen, Denmark last year.

“The partnership between USDA and U.S. dairy producers to increase sustainability has achieved remarkable results over the past year,” said Vilsack. “USDA has awarded funding to establish 30 anaerobic digesters, and we are assisting farmers with digester feasibility studies and energy audits to help producers reduce greenhouse gas emissions, while increasing on-farm income. The partnership is a demonstration of the Obama Administration’s commitment to producing renewable energy, providing new economic opportunities to farmers, and preserving natural resources.”

On December 15, 2009, USDA and the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy signed a sustainability-focused Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to work in concert to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from dairy farms by 25 percent by 2020. Since the signing, USDA and the Center have partnered to increase the number of operating anaerobic digesters on farms, and encouraged research and development of new technologies to help dairies reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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environment, usda