Across America, farmers and ranchers are gearing up to voice their concerns from the countryside about proposed climate-change cap-and-trade legislation.

Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, is encouraging members of local and state Farm Bureaus to sign "Don't CAP our future" on a farm cap or hat and hand-deliver it to a member of Congress.

The farm cap is an ever-present icon of American agriculture, and it seemed a natural fit as the symbol with which to send a message regarding congressional cap-and-trade schemes, according to Farm Bureau.

The message refers to the fact that analyses from numerous sources show farmers and ranchers will pay more for fuel, fertilizer and energy if cap-and-trade legislation becomes law. Over time, these higher expenses and a shift in land use would lead to a decrease in food production in the United States.

The Department of Energy estimates energy costs could grow by $1,870 per household. Combined with higher costs for food, the additional yearly hit on families would be about $2,300 per household. Said another way, the cap-and-trade law would impose costs of up to $200 billion a year on American households.

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Source: American Farm Bureau Federation