For the Week Ending June 17, 2022

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Ocean Shipping Reform Act Of 2022 Signed Into Law
A win for the U.S. agriculture groups – the Ocean Shipping Reform Act (OSRA) was signed into law. OSRA addresses some of the most egregious practices threatening U.S. agriculture exports, such as unfair and onerous detention and demurrage charges. Last year alone, the U.S. pork industry exported more than $8 billion in products, which added $63 to the value of each hog marketed. OSRA will provide the Federal Maritime Commission additional authority to help protect American shippers, farmers, and manufacturers from unfair or unreasonable anticompetitive actions by foreign-owned ocean carriers. NPPC’s CEO Bryan Humphreys joined President Biden for the (OSRA) signing ceremony. (NPPC Press Release)

NPPC Promotes Maria C. Zieba To Vice President Of International Affairs
NPPC announced the promotion of Maria C. Zieba to vice president of international affairs. She will oversee international trade advocacy efforts on behalf of America’s 60,000 pork producers.  Maria joined NPPC in January 2015 and has played a prominent role in supporting the Association’s efforts to expand market access of U.S. pork products. These include successfully maintaining zero duties for U.S. pork exports to Canada and Mexico as part of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, lowering Most Favored Nation tariffs on imported pork from the Philippines and Vietnam, and expanding market access of fresh, frozen, and processed pork into Argentina. (NPPC press release)

NPPC Files Comments to the Securities Exchange Commission on Climate Reporting Rules
NPPC and 10 other agricultural groups filed joint comments on the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed climate reporting rules. The proposed regulation would mandate publicly traded companies to report on their carbon emissions and other climate-related information, including potentially sensitive company data and similar information from companies with which they do business. (NPPC press release)

NPPC Submits Comments to NRCS on Constructed Wetlands
NPPC joined other agricultural groups this week in submitting comments to USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) on their proposed revisions to its national Conservation Practice Standard (CPS) on Constructed Wetlands (CW).  The comments encouraged NRCS to ensure the final CPS-CW focuses the practice on how these wetlands can be used to treat agricultural waste or drainage water.  While a CW installed for these purposes may provide wildlife habitat benefits, the comments object to explicitly forcing those functions into a CW project, and suggested specific language NRCS could use in the standard to reinforce this.  NPPC made these comments because requiring habitat features be included in a CW project, like a large vegetative buffer around the wetland, makes the project far more costly and discourages farmers’ use of CW’s for its primary water quality improvement purposes. Well-designed and situated constructed wetlands are a particularly effective practice to reduce agricultural nutrient losses to restore, protect and maintain surface water quality, and NRCS needs to issue a CPS for CWs that makes them as effective and economical as possible.  NRCS has three other CPS for other types of wetlands that have supplying habitat functions as one of their primary purposes, and where the explicit objective is increasing habitat, those CPS should be used.  NRCS is reviewing and revising CPS as required by the 2018 Farm Bill.  (NPPC’s comments)