Today's Law As Amended


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AB-1411 Agriculture: greenhouse gas mitigation: Healthy Soils Program.(2021-2022)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Section 569 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

569.
 (a) (1) The department, in consultation with the panel, shall establish and oversee a Healthy Soils Program. The program shall seek to optimize climate benefits while supporting the economic viability of California agriculture by providing incentives, including, but not limited to, loans, grants, research, and technical assistance, and educational materials and outreach, to farmers whose management practices contribute to healthy soils and result in net long-term on-farm greenhouse gas benefits. The program may also include the funding of on-farm demonstration projects that further the goals of the program.
(2) The department, in consultation with the panel, may determine priorities for the program and give priority to projects that occur in and benefit disadvantaged communities identified pursuant to Section 39711 of the Health and Safety Code, show promise of being replicable in other parts of the state, or provide environmental and agronomic cobenefits, such as improved air and water quality, improved crop yield, and reduced soil erosion.
(3) The panel shall also advise the department on scientific findings, program framework, guidelines, grower incentives, and providing technical assistance.
(4) If the department elects to fund on-farm demonstration projects described in paragraph (1), the department, in consultation with the panel, shall establish a technical advisory committee to review on-farm demonstration project applications for scientific validity and the proposed project’s potential to achieve greenhouse gas benefits.
(b) The department shall implement the program  Healthy Soils Program  and quantify greenhouse gas emissions reductions in accordance with the funding guidelines developed by the State Air Resources Board pursuant to Section 39715 of the Health and Safety Code and the quantification methods developed by the State Air Resources Board pursuant to Section 16428.9 of the Government Code.
(c) (1) The department may pursue public and private sources to support the Healthy Soils Program.
(2) To the extent funds are available, the department may provide support to the program, including, but not limited to, technical assistance, education, and outreach.
(d) For purposes of this section, “panel” means the Scientific Advisory Panel on Environmental Farming.
(e) For purposes of the Healthy Soils Program, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) “Greenhouse gas benefits” means greenhouse gas emissions source reduction or carbon sequestration.
(2) “Healthy soils” means soils that enhance their continuing capacity to function as a biological system, increase soil organic matter, improve soil structure and water- and nutrient-holding capacity, and result in net long-term greenhouse gas benefits.
(3) “On-farm demonstration projects” means projects that incorporate farm management practices that result in greenhouse gas benefits across all farming types with the intent to establish or promote healthy soils.