CLARIFICATION: Michele Reba is with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service, Delta Water Management Research Unit. Her affiliation was misrepresented in an earlier version of this story.
Four Arkansas farms have made a deal with the world’s largest software maker, Microsoft. The Whitaker Farms in McGehee, Isbell Farm in Stuttgart, Hooks Family Farm in Hazen and Florenden Farms in Burdette join two farms in California and one in Mississippi as the first recipients of carbon credits for rice production.
The program rewards farmers for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from rice, considered among the more environmentally damaging of all crops. With a carbon credit, companies can exceed emissions caps by paying for reductions elsewhere, such as on a farm.