The Iowa Chapter supports policies that transition toward more sustainable agriculture, including restoring and preserving topsoil.
Soil health and restoration of soil health are important for this generation of farmers and landowners and for the next generation and their children and grandchildren. Likewise soil health is of great economic benefit to Iowa's agriculture industry.
Soil Health, executive summary
See video on "The 5 Principles of Soil Health"
Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs)
The Iowa Chapter is calling for a moratorium on building new confined animal feeding operations and expanding existing operations.
- The Iowa Chapter is concerned about the pollution created by concentrated animal feeding operations, including water pollution and air pollution. Among the trends in industrial-scale agriculture is the emergence of large-scale industrial animal production. The animals housed in large buildings never have an opportunity to be outside.
- The buildings can house several thousand hogs or millions of chickens. It is not unusual to find one building in Iowa housing 7,000 hogs, producing manure equivalent to that of 28,000 people or a city roughly the size of Ankeny.
- Unlike human sewage, manure is not treated. Operators spread the manure on farmland in quantities that can pollute the nearby water bodies. The expansion of concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) in Iowa has resulted in manure spills and fish kills.
- Neighbors to these facilities complain of horrendous odors, constant noise, exacerbated health problems, loss of property values, and a lower quality of life.
- Iowa must reduce the impact of these CAFOs on the environment.
The Iowa Chapter advocates for stream buffers, to prevent soil erosion.
The corn field in the photo below does not have an adequate stream buffer.