The Rural Investment to Protect our Environment (RIPE) Roadmap is a state policy framework and stakeholder engagement process that merges rural interests in economic development with urban interests in environmental policy, thereby enabling a rural-urban and bipartisan coalition that is able to advance state policy that can withstand political transitions. Specifically, the RIPE Roadmap achieves the following goals, simultaneously:
- Fairly compensate farmers with a reliable revenue stream that rural communities can rely upon in an era of declining rural economies, volatile commodity prices & disrupted access to international markets. Farmers can earn $10-$54/acre for qualifying measures.
- Close the digital divide in rural America. Provide modern internet access to rural communities.
- Invest in rural economic development programs. The RIPE Roadmap can invest in the range of $10-$20 million annually in rural economic programs.
- Invest in voluntary sustainable agriculture practices for clean drinking water & water conservation. All residents will enjoy higher quality water throughout the state.
- Comprehensively address climate change by making polluters pay. The polluting energy companies will pay for their share of pollution, thereby enabling clean energy to fairly compete in the market. This will reduce air pollution to the level that scientists say is needed to stabilize the climate, which will benefit rural and urban citizens alike.