Through the uncertain times that April has brought us, National Ag Law Center staff have continued connecting stakeholders with trusted research and information in agricultural and food law. A compilation of new resources from the month of April is outlined below.
COVID-19 Resource Library
The agriculture industry has not been exempt from the uncertainty the COVID-19 pandemic has brought. We have received many questions on a variety of topics relating to the global pandemic, from the CARES Act to agricultural labor issues. To address these questions, we have created the COVID-19 Resource Library. Set up in a Q&A format, this page is meant to provide resources and answers to ag-related questions that have arisen throughout the crisis. The page can be found here.
NEPA and Agriculture: Basics and CEQ’s Proposed Regulations: On April 1st we were joined by Karen Carr, Partner and Co-Leader of the Agricultural Technology Group at Arent Fox LLP for a webinar discussing the National Environmental Policy Act. In this webinar Karen addressed the basics of NEPA, walked recently proposed changes by the Council for Environmental Quality, and discussed how those changes may impact the intersection of NEPA and agriculture. A recording of this webinar can be found here.
The Deal with Dicamba: An Overview of Dicamba-Related Litigation: Staff Attorney Brigit Rollins concluded her eight-part The Deal with Dicamba blog series with a webinar this month. In this webinar Brigit provided an overview of the several hundred lawsuits filed in regard to dicamba-based herbicides. She discussed lawsuits filed by farmers against companies Monsanto and BASF, a lawsuit filed against the Environmental Protection Agency, as well as a lawsuit filed against the Arkansas State Plant Board. Brigit also discussed what the outcome of each suit could mean for dicamba use in the U.S. A recording of this webinar can be found here.
COVID-19: Regulatory Changes Impacting Food Production and Distribution: John Dillard, a Principal Attorney at OFW Law joined us April 22nd for a webinar focusing on COVID-19 and the food and agriculture sector. In this webinar, John provided a comprehensive overview of the federal regulatory changes that have been implemented to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including changes in USDA and FDA inspections, enforcement of regulations related to transportation of food, as well as worker safety. John also addressed guidance from several federal agencies. A recording of this webinar can be found here.
Ag Labor During Seedtime and Harvest within a Global Pandemic: What Agribusinesses Must Know and Do to Survive COVID-19: Brandon Davis, Nathan Huff and Michael Williams of Phelps Dunbar, LLP led an April 29 webinar focusing on agricultural labor issues surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. In this webinar our speakers touched on a variety of issues agribusinesses may face, as well as ways to navigate this difficult climate. Specific topics included SBA loans and stimulus package relief, OSHA workplace regulations and the current status of H2A and H2B permits. A recording of this webinar can be found here.
Recent Agritourism Litigation in the United States: There has been significant growth in the agritourism industry, however with growth comes legal issues for agritourism operators. In order to help agritourism operators understand these legal issues and manage legal liability risk, Peggy Kirk Hall and Ellen Essman with Ohio State University Extension have compiled a report summarizing findings of recent court cases involving agritourism operations, as well as highlighting legal incidents that occurred but did not produce litigation. This publication can be found here.
Waters of the United States: Timeline of Definitions: The definition of “waters of the United States” has been changed several times since it was initially defined in 1973. Staff Attorney Brigit Rollins has created an in-depth timeline tracking the various changes to the definition of WOTUS, as well as identifying when and where each definition of WOTUS is applicable. This publication can be found here.
- Revisiting WOTUS: Tracking Regulatory Changes to Critical CWA Term
- Decision Dispute: EPA Under Fire for Glyphosate Re-Approval
- EPA Issues Guidance on Environmental Compliance During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Supreme Court Issues Opinion in “County of Maui”
- Senior Staff Attorney Rusty Rumley participated in the Farmer Veteran COVID-19 Listening Session, hosted by the National Center for Appropriate Technology. In this listening session Rusty discussed legal issues in agriculture and how COVID-19 is impacting farmers.