Vilsack Taps Environment and Climate Advisor

Bonnie brings plenty of conservation experience to USDA.

Published on: Apr 17, 2009

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack has appointed Robert Bonnie as Senior Advisor for Environment and Climate. Bonnie has been with the Environmental Defense Fund since 1995 and will help guide broad policy and program decisions with an emphasis on those concerning the nation's natural resources and climate issues..

"President Obama has been clear that two of his top goals for the department are related to the environment: expanding the capacity of our land, our farms, and our ranches to produce alternative forms of energy and fuel; and developing the research that will help agriculture transition away from its significant dependence on fossil fuels," Vilsack said. "Robert's work on conservation incentives and markets, as well as conservation policy, will help guide USDA as we address some of the most challenging issues facing our nation's future."

Bonnie's focus at EDF has been on the development and expansion of conservation incentives and markets that reward farmers, ranchers and forest owners for land stewardship. He has been extensively involved in the development of Safe Harbor and other incentive programs under the Endangered Species Act, as well as conservation programs under the 2008 Farm Bill.