Statement on USDA Report Showing Positive Impact of Farming Practices in Chesapeake Bay Region

DOVER — Delaware Governor Jack Markell and Secretary of Agriculture Ed Kee released the following statement regarding today’s report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture showing significant environmental improvements due to farmers’ work in the Chesapeake Bay region. The report states that cropland productivity in the Chesapeake Bay region is on the increase, while nutrient runoff from nitrogen and phosphorous, as well as sediment loss, are decreasing.

“Improving our environment and water quality has long been our goal in Delaware, with the First State’s work in nutrient management on the leading edge,” Gov. Markell said. “We recognized early on the importance of a partnership between farmers and the state to reducing environmental impact, and our farmers have stepped up to the challenge. Their work is paying off, as we see today. Our farmers should be applauded for their work using the latest conservation techniques that will benefit all Delawareans.”

“I often say that farmers are the first environmentalists, and that becomes especially clear when we look at this report,” Secretary Kee said. “There’s no one closer to the land and more in tune with the environment than Delaware farmers. While there’s still plenty of work to be done, science showed us the path forward 15 years ago, and science is now telling us that our farmers have done a great job and are committed to this task.”