Prairie Steward Newsletters

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Issue No. 49 - Winter 2007

After spending the summer ruminating on environmental issues, the Federal Government released, in October, 2006, the much-anticipated “Clean Air Act”.

The government is taking the approach that blends the issues of air pollution and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Legitimately, both issues need significant attention but the strategy will create challenges in communicating priorities. Specific to carbon trading, the Government wants to consult with the provinces and various industry groups on a course to reduce GHG emissions. The Government indicates that it will not spend taxpayer dollars on carbon credits but does encourage industry to develop whatever tools it feels appropriate to meet eventual domestic environmental targets.

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Issue No. 48 - Summer 2006

Fallow acres in Saskatchewan have dropped dramatically over the past 15 years, largely due to direct seeding and producers using more diverse rotations.

However, for the 2006 season, I suspect the fallow acres will increase. The reasons vary somewhat; some areas will increase fallow because the soil is too wet to seed. In other areas, such as the southwest, fallow is more commonly found as a risk management tool. However, the most significant influence resulting in increased fallow acres for this year is the almost across the board low commodity prices. Inputs remain very high and profits are made at every level in the food chain - except at the farm level.

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Issue No. 47 - Spring 2006

In mid February, SSCA learned that it had been nominated and selected as one of 100 of Saskatchewan’s Environmental Champions.

SSCA was selected as a Champion for the significant contribution it has made to the province in agriculture, ecology and education. Due in significant part to the efforts of the SSCA, cropping practices such as summer fallow and frequent cultivation are now changing. In 1990, the SSCA secured funding from the provincial government to launch its technology transfer program to promote soil conservation practices to farmers across the province.

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