American producers have a pivotal role to play in tackling climate change, but they shouldn’t sacrifice their own livelihood in the process.

Current public and private carbon programs rely on a cost-share model and participation is costly to farmers. At Rural Investment to Protect Our Environment (RIPE), we believe farmers and ranchers should be fairly rewarded for carbon plus all the public benefits conservation practices provide.

The RIPE100 policy plan would compensate producers with $100 per acre or animal unit for their public contributions through voluntary stewardship practices. Qualifying practices provide clean water, healthy soil and air, greater biodiversity, greenhouse gas reduction and other environmental benefits. Additionally, the payments would cover the increased costs of inputs, like fuel, due to climate policy. 

Legislators on both sides of the aisle are interested in the RIPE100 policy but need to hear from producers before moving forward. 

Here’s how RIPE100 will work for you:

  1. Allows producers to receive a reasonable return.
  2. Enables all farmers and ranchers to participate with a producer-friendly program that is simple and practical.
  3. Rewards early adopters and demonstrates greenhouse gas “additionality.”
  4. Compensates voluntary stewardship at levels that align with the combined environmental values delivered.
  5. Promotes equity and inclusion.
  6. Does not compete for funds against existing safety net programs.
  7. Complements existing markets and programs by allowing stacked payments up to the public value delivered by the practice.

Support for RIPE

Farmers should be rewarded for their efforts to work against climate change, and the RIPE100 policy would do that. I like that the plan does not have mandates or regulations or punishments. It’s voluntary and you can include as many acres and practices as you want. And if you are already using these practices, you’ll still get your payments. It has a lot of potential.

As farmers, we create public benefit not only through producing food for the world, but also by being stewards of our natural resources. RIPE is about making sure that producers get fair compensation for that.

I believe RIPE100 can be the incentive to move the conservation needle significantly across our agriculture landscape to the benefit of the producers and our communities that thrive off the stewardship of our natural resources.


of farmers support a climate policy that pays $100 per acre for voluntary adoption of conservation practices

Independent survey of farmers conducted by Trust In Food


of farmers support a policy that pays for practices that improve soil health and water quality as well as carbon capture over a policy that pays solely for carbon capture

RIPE is a producer-led nonprofit advancing a national climate policy that invests in voluntary agricultural stewardship practices that provide a reasonable return to farmers and ranchers, and the public.