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Federal government wants public input on fertilizer emissions reduction

Federal government wants public input on fertilizer emissions reduction

Canadians have until Aug. 31 to submit comments

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer
Farms.com

The federal government is asking Canadians to get involved with its fertilizer emissions reduction target.

“The (Government of Canada) aims to reduce fertilizer emissions without imposing restrictions on their use by supporting producers in their sustainable agricultural practices,” Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada said in an Aug. 2 Twitter post.

Until Aug. 31, Canadians can complete a survey or send an email to provide input about the federal government’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from fertilizers by 30 per cent below 2020 levels by 2030.

Emissions survey questions
Screenshot of examples of questions found in the survey.

The survey is divided into three issues:

  • Developing a Strategic Approach to meeting the Fertilizer Emissions Target;
  • Data, Reporting, and Measurement,; and
  • Innovation and Transformation Opportunities.

Canadian lawmakers are encouraging farmers to engage in the consultation process.

“I encourage the #CdnAg community, from coast to coast to coast, to engage with this call for input,” Senator Rob Black said on Twitter on Aug. 8. “It is critical that the government hear directly from those in #agriculture on how to make the sector more “sustainable.”

The federal government repeated its fertilizer emissions reduction goal as part of the new Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership.

Since then, multiple provincial ag ministers have criticized the target, saying producers should be allowed to farm as necessary to feed a hungry global population.

“As our farmers work to feed Canada and the world, we need to work with them and support their ongoing efforts to grow and produce the food we need. The federal government needs to be true partners, rather than simply imposing targets that make it harder,” said Lisa Thompson, Ontario’s minister of agriculture, food and rural affairs.

“Provinces pushed the federal government to discuss this important topic, but were disappointed to learn that the target is already set,” a July 22 joint statement from Alberta and Saskatchewan says. “The commitment to future consultations are only to determine how to meet the target that Prime Minister Trudeau and Minister Bibeau have already unilaterally imposed on this industry, not to consult on what is achievable or attainable.


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There may be losses with anhydrous fertilizer. In the prairie provinces, granular fertilizer has been put into the ground below the seed such that losses are minimal since about 1990. The real loss to rivers and streams comes from broadcast fertilizer on lawns, especially those resort lawns near the lakes and rivers.
Rudolph |Aug 11 2022 1:17PM