WASHINGTON—The Montana Farm Bureau is thrilled that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) responded to American Farm Bureau Federation’s (AFBF) concerns and affirmed that regulations intended for Wall Street should not extend to America’s family farms. The SEC voted today on its final climate disclosure rule and removed the Scope 3 reporting requirement, which would have required public companies to report the greenhouse gas emissions of their supply chain.

Montana Farm Bureau President Cyndi Johnson noted, “The removal of Scope 3 is truly a win for agriculture across this country. Can you imagine if a family farm had to track every gallon of diesel and every time they started their tractor to the SEC?  Our Montana Farm Bureau grassroots members truly stepped up to make the SEC as well as our lawmakers realize that Scope 3 would hurt our family farms. We especially want to thank Senator Tester, a farmer himself, who listened to our grassroots Farm Bureau members and brought their strong concerns to the forefront. He was able to stay the course and kept sending the message about how very absurd the SEC’s rule was to include onerous reporting requirements for America’s farms and ranches.”

Johnson, a wheat and pulse crop farmer from Conrad, said, “This is a triumph for agriculture, and we’d like to recognize the role that our members who took action and our Montana Farm Bureau staff played in helping to secure this decision.”

Since the rule was first proposed two years ago, AFBF led the charge for the removal of Scope 3. Farm Bureau members sent almost 20,000 messages to the SEC and Capitol Hill, sharing their perspectives on how Scope 3 reporting would affect their farms. 

“AFBF thanks SEC Chair Gary Gensler and his staff for their diligence in researching the unintended consequences of an overreaching Scope 3 requirement,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall. “Farmers are committed to protecting the natural resources they’ve been entrusted with, and they continue to advance climate-smart agriculture, but they cannot afford to hire compliance officers just to handle SEC reporting requirements. This is especially true for small farms that would have been squeezed out of the supply chain.”

Farm Bureau recognizes the value of data collection and has actively contributed to responsible approaches to such efforts, including as a founding member of the Ecosystem Services Market Consortium and a leader in Field to Market. Both organizations work to empower farmers when it comes to on-farm data collection. The proposed Scope 3 requirement, however, would have imposed additional burdens on farmers, who provide almost every raw product that goes into the food supply chain. The onerous reporting requirements could have disqualified small, family-owned farms from doing business with public companies, putting those farms at risk of going out of business.