The Farm Bill and Invasive Species

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The North American Invasive Species Management Association (NAISMA) recognizes the importance of protecting America’s food and water supply and therefore supports the inclusion of invasive species prevention, monitoring, management, and research within the Farm Bill.

Invasive species are a major cause of crop loss. They pose one of the greatest threats to food security and water supplies in the United States. In PL115-334, there are numerous sections (primarily within Title II Conservation) that are intended to prevent, mitigate, or reduce the detrimental impacts of invasive species.

NAISMA advocates for policy and funding priorities within the 2023 Farm Bill to address the effects of invasive species. Invasive species management experts within NAISMA have examined the current law and identified the following priorities to improve it relative to invasive species prevention, management, and research.

Ask your legislators to improve invasive species provisions within the 2023 Farm Bill. Take Action →

1. Update the definition of a plant pest

Amend Definition Title 7 Chapter 104 Section 7702 Definitions

(14) Plant pest

The term “plant pest” means any living stage of any of the following that can directly or indirectly injure, cause damage to, or cause disease in any plant or plant product:

(A) A protozoan.
(B) A nonhuman animal.
(C) A parasitic plant.
(D) A bacterium.
(E) A fungus.

(F) A virus or viroid.
(G) An infectious agent or other pathogen.
(H) A noxious weed.
(I) Any article similar to or allied with any of the articles specified in the preceding subparagraphs.

2. Within Title II-Conservation, establish a cost-share program to implement the Certified Weed Free Products Program

The NAISMA Certified Weed Free Products (WFP) program is the only program in North America that provides land managers with assurance that noxious weeds will not be spread through the movement of forage, hay, mulch, or gravel brought into a property. NAISMA maintains a list of science-based standards, provides guidelines, facilitates communications among stakeholders, and ensures uniform training and participation.

The Farm Bill should direct the federal government to establish a 75% cost-share program authorized at $30M for implementation of the WFP program (including inspection services) by states, local governments, tribes, and non-profit organizations, plus developing incentives for agricultural and industrial producers.

3. Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research

Amend Subsection 7601(c) paragraph (1) of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (7 U.S.C. 5939) by inserting a new subparagraph (H) “invasive species.” 

The amendment adds invasive species as a key problem of national and international significance eligible for funding by the foundation.

4. Improve the Conservation Reserve Program — (Title II, Subtitle B) established under subchapter B of chapter 1 of subtitle D of title XII of the Food Security Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3831)

Extension and enrollment requirements of conservation reserve program

Amend section 1231(b) on Eligible Land, by inserting  a new paragraph at the end to read as follows:

“(6) land enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program must be covered by an invasive species management plan, approved by the Secretary, to prevent the introduction of invasive species, avoid their spread, and control any existing invasive species on the land in question during the period of enrollment.”

  1. Duties of owners and operators
    1. Amend subsection (b) paragraph (1) of section 1232 to read as follows (new language in italics):

“(1) the conservation measures and practices to be carried out by the owner or operator during the term of the contract, including measures to prevent the introduction and control the spread of invasive species; and”

  1. Duties of the Secretary
    1. Section 1233 of the Food Security Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3833), is amended by striking the word “and” at the end of subparagraph 1233(a)(2)(B), adding the word “and” at the end of subparagraph 1233(a)(2)(C), and adding a new subparagraph 1233(a)(2)(D) to read as follows:

“(D) the control of noxious weeds and invasive species.”

AND

  1. Subsection 1233(c) is amended by adding a new paragraph (5) to read as follows:

“(5) Prevention or control of invasive species.”

  1. Incentive Payments
    1. Paragraph 1234(c)(1) of the Food Security Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3834), is amended by to read as follows (new language in italics):

“(1) In General. – The Secretary may make incentive payments to an owner or operator of eligible land in an amount sufficient to encourage proper thinning and other practices to improve the condition of resources, promote forest management, prevent introduction or control invasive species, or enhance wildlife habitat on the land.”


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