farm scene

The Security and Exchange Commission’s proposed rule to require climate disclosures by public companies could severely impact family farms and ranches and intensify the already concerning rate of consolidation in agriculture.

The proposed rule requires extensive requirements for public companies to report on Scope 3 emissions, which are the result of activities from assets not owned or controlled by an organization but contribute to its value chain. While farmers and ranchers would not be required to report directly to the SEC, they provide almost every raw product that goes into the supply chain.

“The SEC has no standing to create such an intrusive rule that has the potential to create substantial liabilities and costs for producers of every commodity,” said Brandon Kern, senior director of state and national policy with Ohio Farm Bureau. “We talked about this extensively during a recent trip to Washington, D.C. and we told our members of Congress directly that Farm Bureau strongly opposes this proposal and we ask them to do the same. They need to hear that message from our members as well through the Action Alert that was created for this issue.”

American Farm Bureau economists anticipate those costs and liabilities stemming from reporting obligations, technical challenges, significant financial and operational disruption and the risk of financially crippling legal liabilities.

“Farmers have never been subjected to regulations intended for Wall Street,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall. “This proposed rule is an example of overreach by the SEC, whose primary purpose is to protect investors from unscrupulous business practices. Unlike large corporations currently regulated by the SEC, farmers don’t have a team of compliance officers or attorneys dedicated to handling SEC compliance issues. This proposal could keep small farms from doing business with public companies at a time when all farms are needed to ensure food security here and abroad.”

AFBF economists expect the proposed SEC rule to impact farmers and ranchers through:

  • Increased costs due to compliance concerns. Farmers could be required to track and disclose information on day-to-day activities;
  • Potentially requiring private and personally identifiable data. Unlike public companies and corporations, farmers work and raise families in their place of business;
  • Consolidation, as small farms lack the resources to comply with burdensome reporting requirements;
  • Increased liability because the timeline given to comply with Scope 3 emissions is unattainable.

Farmers have until June 17 to comment on the proposed rule change.

American Farm Bureau Federation economists discuss potential impacts of the proposed rule in the latest Market Intel.

If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington, D.C.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
Through its policies it brings together people in the agricultural community and invests in building vibrant communities that support agriculture.
Eric Bernstein 's avatar
Eric Bernstein

Wyandot County Farm Bureau

Future employees, leaders
If you have issues with local planning or have legal questions, someone at the Farm Bureau has the answer for you, or they’ll connect you with someone who does.
Gayle Hansen's avatar
Gayle Hansen

Cuyahoga County Farm Bureau

Hansen's Greenhouse
As a member of Farm Bureau, I am glad that this organization takes action when necessary to protect and advance agriculture.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

Policy Development
Farm Bureau is an incredible organization that has given me countless professional development opportunities in addition to advocating for all sizes and types of farmers.
Shana Angel's avatar
Shana Angel

Tuscarawas County Farm Bureau

We go to a lot of Farm Bureau events, and there’s a lot of camaraderie built because you’re meeting with people who have similar interests and goals.
Andy Hollenback's avatar
Andy Hollenback

Licking County Farm Bureau

Event Calendar
Suggested Tags: