R CALF USA, a national association of independent cattle producers, has come out against the cap and trade legislation now pending in Congress — in part because the cattle group says the bill will work a special hardship on rural areas. R CALF says the act is “very complex and includes a host of provisions designed to drive up energy costs and thereby reduce energy consumption. Reduced energy consumption is not favorable to growing an economy.” 

First, R CALF said the bill will raise the costs for cattle producers as it raises the price of energy. Second, the cattle raisers say the bill will “penalize smaller, lesser capitalized utilities that cannot readily adapt to renewable technologies vis à vis larger, better capitalized utilities. These provisions will result in higher costs to rural electrical users.” Third, R CALF claims the bill is “economic suicide” if other, faster growing economies (such as Brazil and China) don’t set similar limits on greenhouse gas production.

R CALF also says the bill contains provisions that will affect mostly western cattle raisers. For instance, the bill would create a national “Wildlife Habitat and Corridors Information Program.” Cattle raisers have long feared federal mandates that could disrupt their pastures — in particular “corridors” that would be set aside for wildlife migration