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Bipartisan Bill Receives Praise in Illinois: Boosting Cover Crop Adoption for Local Farmers
Illinois Ag Connection - 05/23/2023

Illinois farmers are set to benefit from a bipartisan bill aimed at encouraging the widespread adoption of cover crops. The Conservation Opportunity and Voluntary Environment Resilience (COVER) Act, recently introduced by Senator Brown (D-OH) and Representatives Casten (D-IL), Slotkin (D-MI), and Bost (R-IL), has garnered praise from prominent agricultural organizations, including the American Farmland Trust and the Illinois Soybean Association.

The COVER Act proposes a national $5 per acre discount on crop insurance premiums for farmers who incorporate cover crops into their agricultural practices. By reducing financial barriers and incentivizing the use of cover crops, this legislation aims to enhance soil health, minimize erosion, and improve resilience to climate-related challenges faced by Illinois farmers.

Illinois has long been recognized as a leader in sustainable agriculture, and the endorsement of the COVER Act by the Illinois Soybean Association underscores the state's commitment to environmentally conscious farming practices. With a membership representing over 43,000 soybean farmers, the association recognizes the significance of voluntary programs that facilitate the adoption of conservation practices to ensure the long-term viability of the agricultural sector.

By integrating the COVER Act into the Farm Bill, policymakers aim to provide long-lasting support and resources to Illinois farmers, promoting the widespread implementation of cover crops. This legislation signifies a significant step towards building a more sustainable and resilient agricultural industry in Illinois, benefitting both farmers and the environment.

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