Thanks to the efforts of Ohio Farm Bureau, farmers’ voluntary actions to improve the state’s water quality will now be acknowledged in Ohio’s plan on how to reduce the amount of phosphorus going into Lake Erie.
The United States and Canada have set goals of reducing phosphorus loads into the western and central basins of Lake Erie. In the United States, domestic action plans are required for Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Pennsylvania and New York. Ohio’s draft plan, however, did not detail any of the efforts by Ohio Farm Bureau, Ohio’s agricultural industry or other non-state agencies. Projects such as OFBF’s multi-million dollar Water Quality Action Plan or Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network were not included.
Ohio Farm Bureau noted the omission in comments submitted to Ohio EPA and representatives of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Region 5 during a discussion about Ohio’s efforts to improve water quality. The U.S. EPA officials asked OFBF for details about voluntary efforts by farmers and ag groups to include in Ohio’s action plan.
“This is a great way to recognize how Ohio’s ag community has been proactive in addressing water quality challenges,” said Larry Antosch, OFBF’s senior director of policy development and environmental policy.