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Bills also were filed this year in Arizona, California, Montana, Texas, Utah and Washington state restricting foreign ownership of American farmland.

Though Chinese companies own just 383,935 acres, less than 1% of foreign-held acres, nearly a third of states have laws prohibiting certain foreign businesses and governments from buying agricultural lands within their borders, and more states are looking to join them. Read more»

The Bighorn Fire in June, 2020, visible from townhouses near Ventana Canyon as the fire burns downslope.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture will spend nearly $500 million on projects to reduce wildfire risk in 11 areas in Western states, including Arizona, with funding coming from the budget, climate and taxes law that passed last year. Read more»

Cultivation and production of cannabis as a crop are not about to rival the 5 C’s: cattle, cotton, copper, citrus and climate.

Sales of marijuana in Arizona soared to $1.6 billion in 2021, just one year after recreational pot was legalized in the state, making Arizona second only to California for retail sales that year. Read more»

Global yields of corn could drop by as much as 24% by 2030, according to NASA’s news service, due to rising temperatures, shifts in rainfall patterns and 'elevated surface carbon dioxide concentrations from human-caused greenhouse gas emissions.'

Much of the very same land that is the source of diversity for our food lies in countries that are the most vulnerable to the destructive impacts of climate change - and that vulnerability rebounds into how much Americans pay for food. Read more»

A mural is displayed along the side of U.S. 191 in Chinle, Arizona, where the health center has four traditional healers on staff to provide services.

President Biden is poised to designate Avi Kwa Ame, a sacred site for Native American tribes in southern Nevada, as a national monument, and announced economic, climate and land management actions the administration is taking to foster a strong relationship with Indian Country.  Read more»

A $10 million federal grant awarded to the Tohono O’odham Nation will help connect more businesses, schools and farms to high-speed Internet, Charlene Fernandez, the USDA rural development director for Arizona, announced Thursday. Read more»

One of the peaks at the Santa Rita Mountains, about 40 miles south of Tucson, will be renamed to Santa Rita Peak to eliminate the use of a racist and sexist slur against Native Americans. The U.S. Department of Interior announced Thursday that almost 650 sites on public lands nationwide will remove the term from their names.

Hundreds of geographic sites nationwide, including two locations in Southern Arizona and 66 across the state, have been renamed to remove a racial and sexist slur against Native Americans, the U.S. Interior Department announced Thursday. Read more»

Nearly two dozen GOP attorneys general - including Arizona AG Mark Brnovich - filed a complaint in federal court against the USDA and its interpretation of the executive order requiring federal agencies to review and revamp policies related to gender or sexual orientation. Read more»

Logs in Coconino National Forest are piled and waiting to be loaded onto a truck.

Plans for commercial logging of old-growth forests on federal lands have moved forward this year - despite an executive order signed on Earth Day by President Joe Biden - projects that collectively threaten about 240,000 acres of older forests. Read more»

The pandemic-era federal aid that made school meals available for free to all public school students — regardless of family income levels — is ending, raising fears about the effects in the upcoming school year for families already struggling with rising food and fuel costs.

Now that President Joe Biden has signed into law the Keep Kids Fed Act, adjusting how students can get their meals, school across the nation are struggling to fill the gaps as federal support for universal free meals soon ends. Read more»

The current shortage began in mid-February, when Abbott Laboratories had to close its Michigan plant after four babies became sick and at least two died. In the four months since, other plants have struggled to keep up with demand as store shelves have increasingly emptied.

Both the Biden administration and Congress moved Wednesday to try to relieve a national infant formula shortage, as the White House invoked the Defense Production Act and the U.S. House approved $28 million for the Food and Drug Administration. Read more»

In March, egg prices increased by 1.9%. This year, poultry prices may increase up to 8.5% while egg prices may increase up to 7%.

Consumers will see higher egg and poultry prices - and farmers and their rural communities will face financial hardship - due to a highly contagious strain of bird flu that has spread rapidly across the U.S., killing millions of chickens, turkeys and wild birds. Read more»

A dozen healthcare organizations in Arizona will share over $5.1 million in federal grants as part the American Rescue Plan Act, passed last year under the Biden administration. Read more»

Chiricahua National Monument is closer to becoming a national park, a more prestigious designation that could bring jobs and tourists to Southeastern Arizona, after the Senate approved a measure without dissent. Read more»

Alexandar Lofgren in a photo posted by U.S. Rep Raúl Grijalva on Facebook. Lofgren was working as a congressional aide for Grijalva when he died in a hiking accident in April.

The Alexander Lofgren Veterans in the Parks Act was named after Alexander Lofgren, an Afghanistan veteran who was working for U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva when he died in a hiking accident, and became law on Monday after President Joe Biden signed it into law with the National Defense Authorization Act. Read more»

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