The Iowa Supreme Court heard arguments September 14 and must now decide whether to weigh in on a federal lawsuit that pits the water supplier for 500,000 central Iowa residents against upstream farmers accused of contaminating rivers with nitrates from crop fertilizer. The case was filed by Des Moines Water Works, challenging the immunity enjoyed by agriculture drainage districts from lawsuits and whether the water utility can seek monetary damages. Water Works says it spent $1.5 million last year alone to remove nitrate from water drawn from the Raccoon and Skunk to meet federal health standards. Water Works sued three northwest Iowa counties, Buena Vista, Calhoun, and Sac, that oversee 10 agricultural drainage districts. The lawsuit is seeking to overturn a century of legal precedent that has protected the drainage systems. The lawsuit has farm groups worried. The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation and the state associations for corn and soybean growers have offered to help pay the counties’ legal bills.
The American Soybean Association (ASA) is expressing frustration about the escalation of a trade war with China. On Wednesday, China issued a $50 billion list of U.S. goods – including soybeans – for possible tariff hikes in an escalating dispute. Read moreRead More »
It’s that time of year again when the Environmental Working Group (EWG) stirs the pot with its annual “Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce” report, featuring a “Dirty Dozen” list of fruits and vegetables reported to contain the most pesticide residues. Read moreRead More »