Ohio Governor John Kasich signed an executive order directing Ohio’s Agriculture to “figure out a way to manage their land in a more effective and more environmentally friendly way.”
Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net reports that the legislation will affect around 7,000 agriculturalists and 2 million acres in the northwest quadrant of the state in an effort to clean up Lake Erie. The order names eight watersheds as “Watersheds in Distress” due to high nutrient levels. They are Platter Creek, Little Flat Rock Creek, Little Auglaize River, Eagle Creek, Auglaize River, Blanchard River, St. Mary’s River, and the Ottawa River.
This order will require all operations farming over 50 acres in the affected areas to develop nutrient management plans by the 2020 crop season, according to David Daniels, director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture. Daniels also said that many already have and implement these plans.
Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s Joe Cornely told OCJ’s Matt Reese that “We are pretty disappointed that agriculture got shut out of this process.” Cornley also said that “this two-page executive order doesn’t really tell us what farmers are facing.” He said the OFBF will file a public records request to obtain more information.
You can watch the entire press conference here: