Western Drought Reveals Need for Stronger Farm Protections, Agriculture Secretary Says

USDA’s Tom Vilsack says policy must reflect growing climate risks, as farmers and others look to adapt


“A drought gripping the Western U.S. shows the need for stronger protections for farmers navigating growing climate-related risks, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said.

Since taking leadership of the USDA earlier this year, Mr. Vilsack has urged lawmakers to redesign farm support systems and disaster programs to help farmers cope with harsher and longer-lasting weather calamities, he said. The economic scars left by droughts and other disasters can linger for years, Mr. Vilsack said, rippling beyond farms, ranches and orchards into other sectors of the economy.”