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Bill aims to help farmers sell carbon credits

Bill aims to help farmers sell carbon credits
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The agriculture industry would be able to participate in a growing carbon credit market under bipartisan legislation introduced Thursday that would funnel money to farmers who use sustainable practices. 

Farming, while a source of emissions itself, also presents vast opportunities to sequester carbon in soil and plant life.

The legislation tasks the U.S. Department of Agriculture with creating a certification program to assist farmers and forest landowners in “implementing the protocols and monetizing the climate value of their sustainable practices,” according to a press release.

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“As Americans we have the ability to come up with climate solutions that can benefit our economy and our way of life,” Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamCentrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting Graham quips key to working with Trump: We both 'like him' Centrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle MORE (R-S.C.) said in a release.

“The United States has long been a leader in innovation. This legislation is an opportunity to put our knowledge and can-do spirit to work to promote business opportunities for the agriculture industry while promoting the protection of our environment," he said.

The legislation was introduced by Graham, alongside Sens. Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowExcellence Act will expand mental health and substance use treatment access to millions Senate crafts Pelosi alternative on drug prices Lobbying world MORE (D-Mich.), Mike BraunMichael BraunIU parents protest school's vaccine mandates Rick Scott introduces bill banning 'vaccine passports' for domestic flights Braun-McConnell bill would protect Americans from IRS surveillance MORE (R-Ind.) and Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseCentrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle Lawmakers rally around cyber legislation following string of attacks Graham, Whitehouse: Global transition to renewables would help national security MORE (D-R.I.).

Many large corporations have made commitments to reach net-zero carbon emissions. Their plans rely not only on reducing their own emissions but often offsetting them by buying credits from parties who are able to reduce more carbon outputs.

The bill has the backing of environmental and farm groups along with numerous corporations like McDonalds and Microsoft — both of which have pledged to reduce their carbon footprint.