NRCS Chief Dave White Conducts Agricultural Air Quality Task Force Meeting

Randall Weiseman Florida, Forestry, USDA-NRCS

NRCS Chief Dave White chaired the national Agricultural Air Quality Task Force (AAQTF) meeting last week in Tallahassee, Florida. Also on hand to help support the chief were Elvis Graves, acting designated federal official and Carlos Suarez, state conservationist in Florida.
In 1996, Congress directed the Chief of the Natural Resources Conservation Service to establish a task force to address air quality issues. This task force is comprised of USDA employees, industry representatives, and other experts in the fields of agriculture and air quality. The task force also advises the Secretary of Agriculture in providing oversight and coordination related to agricultural air quality.

Download Audio

Chief White convened the meeting on Tuesday March 9, 2010, and Carlos Suarez, state conservationist in Florida gave an overview of air quality and agriculture in Florida. On Tuesday afternoon the task force attended an informational session and tour concerning prescribed burning at the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy in Tallahassee. Tall Timbers has over 50 years of research in the areas of fire ecology, game bird management, vertebrate ecology and forestry.
Also discussed during the 3 day meeting were topics such as reactive nitrogen; climate change; black carbon; sugar processing in Florida; air quality standards; and livestock and dairy emissions. The task force concluded their meeting with a discussion on prescribed fire and smoke management by the Florida Division of Forestry and a public comment session on Thursday March 11, 2010.
Click here for more information.