Sunday, April 22, 2012

Farmers are True Environmentalists

Today is Earth Day. The one day a year where people reflect on what we can do to help protect the Earth and the environment.

Some may say, "I'm going to start recycling," or

"I'm going to be more conscientious about the amount of water I use," or

"I'm going to change all the light bulbs in the house to the energy efficient ones."

These are all great things to start doing and there are many more you could do to help protect the Earth's natural resources. Adam and I have put all of the above practices into place in our home along with many more to help preserve the land and environment for generations to come.

As farmers we also have a much larger obligation to fulfill. We are caring for many acres of land and it is our job to protect and preserve it, so that one day our children will have the option to farm it if they choose to do so.

Farmers don't take one day out of the year to think about the Earth and the environment. It is something that is constantly on our minds and we are always looking for ways to improve our farming practices to better the environment. We practice soil conservation to prevent erosion. Our crop rotation practices replace nutrients back into the soil with the leftover crop residue. GPS technology is utilized to minimize chemical application and the amount of time the tractor is running. On our farm we utilize larger equipment to be more efficient with our time spent in the field. This improved efficiency reduces emissions from our tractors.

The Case IH tractors we use on our farm have Tier 4 engines and utilize diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) and selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology. This technology recycles the diesel exhaust produced by the engine. This reduces the amount of diesel needed to fuel the tractor, reduces emissions by almost 90% in particulate matter, and allows for a 50% reduction in nitrogen oxides emitted.

The South Dakota Corn Growers Association and Corn Council has put together a series of videos titled, "True Environmentalists." The videos below share the story of how farmers protect our water by keeping the soil clean and how we implement soil conservation practices.

The True Environmentalists site also has several more facts and videos about how farmers are true environmentalist and the other practices farmers put in place everyday to preserve the land. Take a moment to visit this site and learn more about all of the practices farmers put into place to protect our most precious resources.

What things will you implement or change in your lifestyle to help conserve our Earth?

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