News Releases

Statement by Steve Nelson, President, Regarding USDA Coverage of Crop Losses from Irrigation Tunnel Collapse

LINCOLN, NEB. – “We are extremely pleased and greatly appreciate the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Risk Management Agency’s (RMA) announcement that federal crop insurance will cover crop losses resulting from the July 17 tunnel collapse that stopped irrigation flows to farms on the Gering-Ft Laramie Irrigation District in Nebraska and Goshen Irrigation District in Wyoming. This is great news for many farmers who have faced an extremely challenging growing season due to the unfortunate circumstances well beyond their control.”

“Nebraska Farm Bureau was one of many voices that had encouraged USDA to ensure these losses were covered. I want to especially thank Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, RMA Administrator Barbre and his team, the Nebraska Congressional delegation, Governor Ricketts and his administration, including Nebraska Director of Agriculture Steve Wellman, and the numerous others who helped provide critical information and insights to aid RMA in arriving at this decision.” 

“This announcement is critical in eliminating the uncertainty that has existed for many of the farmers impacted. We are grateful this piece of what continues to be an ongoing and challenging situation has been positively resolved.”

The Nebraska Farm Bureau is a grassroots, state-wide organization dedicated to supporting farm and ranch families and working for the benefit of all Nebraskans through a wide variety of educational, service, and advocacy efforts. More than 61,000 families across Nebraska are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve rural and urban prosperity as agriculture is a key fuel to Nebraska’s economy. For more information about Nebraska Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit

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