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Quote of the Day - Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field. - Dwight D. Eisenhower
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Farming Kentucky Bluegrass in Idaho, Not Iowa

First, you're going to have to get over the fact that Kentucky bluegrass is grown outside of Kentucky. Actually, it's grown in Idaho, by farmers.

Let me say that again: Idaho, not only in Kentucky. In fact, Kentucky Bluegrass is really from Europe, Asia, and specifically Algeria and Morocco.

Sacrilege, you say? I just report 'em, I don't make this stuff up. Check out the links.

Ok, with that warning aside, you're ready for the rest of the story.

Seems that an environmental organization, Safe Air For Everyone, was unhappy with the Idaho farmers' practice of burning straw in the fields that is leftover from bluegrass seed harvesting.

So, like all red-blooded Americans, they sued.

But, they sued under RCRA, the Solid Waste Disposal Act, claiming that the bluegrass residue (aka straw) was a solid waste, and had to be disposed of properly, and not burned.

Seems the Ninth Circuit didn't agree. They think grass is, well, grass. Not waste.

In the lawsuit, the farmers argued that they reuse the straw, returning nutrients to the soil, that allows them to grow more and better bluegrass in the future. That was the argument that the Ninth Circuit bought. They disagreed that the straw was actually waste, subject to regulation under our environmental laws.

I lived on a farm in Iowa (not, not Idaho, Iowa). The farmers' argument was the same pitch I heard there in Hudson. Except the farmers there didn't burn straw, they gathered it into hay bales and sold it. To livestock farmers.

But not in Kentucky, of course.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Friday, July 02, 2004 at 14:44 Comments Closed (0) |
 
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