Taking a Look at the Big Picture

Taking a Look at the Big Picture

Taking a Look at the Big Picture. I’m Greg Martin as Line On Agriculture presents the Harvest Clean Energy Report.

Climate Change Legislation, Energy Bill what ever you want to call it Fred Fleming, is a fourth-generation farmer and owner of Reardan Seed Company & Shephards Grain Marketing who believes there is a bigger picture when it comes to saving energy. He has elected to do no-till farming and it is working.

FLEMING: In the big picture, in my opinion that’s sort of what we are doing is we’re farming in a no-till manner and in doing that we have reduced our fuel consumption on our farm by about anywhere from 38 to 42%. That is huge in the fact that it’s just less diesel that we are burning and we’re still farming roughly 42-hundred acres out here.

They produce flour that is used in baking under the Shephards Grain name and Fleming says that the farming process certainly falls under the sustainable heading.

FLEMING: We’re also marketing our product as a Shephards Grain product that is environmentally friendly because by not tilling the soil anymore we aren’t subject to water erosion, wind erosion and equipment erosion or tillage erosion and anything that you can keep your land on the farm is just an asset or long term sustainable agricultural farming. We look at it that way.

Of course part of the big picture has been the subject of carbon sequestration and Fleming says the no-till approach falls under that heading.

FLEMING: By doing that we are also sequestering carbon. We’re pulling the carbon and keeping it the ground and by not really opening the ground up to release the carbon it allows the carbon to stay in the ground and not get put back out and that is one of those things they talk about as far as sequestering carbon and getting paid for carbon credits and those kinds of things that are being talked about in upcoming legislation.

He says they are in the process of coming full circle such as when his great granddad grew grass to feed the animals, they are now starting to grow oil seeds to produce fuel for the vehicles.

FLEMING: What we’ve done with Shephards Grain is actually taking our heritage and marrying it with the technology and then turning that back into the marketplace so now the consumer can actually look at environmentally friendly, socially responsible farming.

For additional information on clean energy, visit harvestcleanenergy.org. That’s today’s Line On Agriculture. I’m Greg Martin on the Northwest Ag Information Network.



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