RIPE supports private carbon markets in addition to a government program investing in producers’ voluntary stewardship practices at rates that fairly reflect their environmental benefits to water, soil health, pollination and other environmental services. In order to facilitate participation by U.S. farmers and ranchers to address climate and other environmental challenges, stronger incentives must be provided beyond what carbon payments alone can deliver. Aligning public payments with the value that producers deliver to the wider set of environmental benefits offers a win-win solution farmers, ranchers and the public.
RIPE’s proposal would directly pay producers for voluntary land stewardship that can provide a greater benefit to the public through carbon sequestration, improved soil health, cleaner water, water conservation, flood mitigation, pollination, biodiversity and other environmental services. Payments would be above implementation costs. This approach is supported by many program precedents and volumes of peer-reviewed research, and offers producers adequate incentive to adopt key conservation measures.
By aligning payment terms with the combined environmental benefits that producers deliver to the public, RIPE’s proposal ensures farmers and ranchers are fully protected from climate policy costs and transforms climate policy into a profit opportunity that benefits producers and the environment.