Kyle Potter: Dayton Proposes More Money to Reimburse Farmers for Buffers

Associated Press:

In an effort to ease concerns about his plan to create 50-foot buffer zones along Minnesota waterways, Gov. Mark Dayton started lining up more money this week to reimburse farmers.

The governor set aside $20 million in his proposed bonding bill unveiled Tuesday to buy up swaths of cropland from farmers. The state had also previously applied for hundreds of millions of dollars through a federal program that pays farmers in 10- to 15-year contracts for environmentally friendly practices that could include buffers, his office said.

The current paradigm is that we have to pay farmers to do the right thing. Why as a farmer can I pollute my neighbor's place or a public resource? Why does my neighbor have to pay me to stop me from sending my pollution downstream to him? Is it my right to pollute? What would Aldo say?