Other Ag News:
Contact: Eric Deeble, Policy Director,
National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC)
Agriculture Needs Multifaceted Climate Solutions
Congress and USDA Should Prioritize Existing Conservation, Agricultural Research, and Rural Economic Development Programs
Washington, DC, February 25th, 2021 – This comment was issued on Thursday, February 25, 2021 in response to the hearing “Climate Change and the U.S. Agriculture and Forestry Sectors” held by the House Agriculture Committee.
“We thank the House Agriculture Committee for holding a hearing on the critical issue of climate change, covering both the challenges and opportunities for farmers and ranchers. We are hopeful that this will be the first of many future hearings and opportunities to discuss this topic in upcoming months,” said Eric Deeble, Policy Director at the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC).
As Chairman Scott (D-GA) expressed, agriculture is a critical sector in the climate crisis – its viability is threatened by it, and simultaneously the sector has immense potential to help mitigate this crisis. Farmers and ranchers are committed to being part of the solution to the climate crisis. They have unique tools, practices, and knowledge to help mitigate the impacts of climate change on their farms and ranches and, with additional support, they can play a role in reversing the climate crisis.
“While it’s encouraging to see widespread support for agriculture’s involvement in climate change adaptation and mitigation, we urge legislators and USDA leadership to prioritize existing conservation, agricultural research, and rural economic development programs that can be rapidly expanded and improved to give farmers the tools and resources they need to take immediate action. An effective response to the climate crisis also calls for reform of commodity and crop insurance programs to bring them into alignment with net zero goals. This is essential as Congress and the Administration begin to consider and develop holistic approaches to addressing climate change, which threatens our food and national security and the future of agriculture,” said Deeble.
About the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC)
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition is a grassroots alliance that advocates for federal policy reform supporting the long-term social, economic, and environmental sustainability of agriculture, natural resources, and rural communities. Learn more and get involved at: https://sustainableagriculture.net
The post COMMENT: Agriculture Needs Multifaceted Climate Solutions appeared first on National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition.
The story of agriculture in America cannot be told without acknowledging the contributions of Black people. Black people have been and are an integral driver in the success of U.S. agriculture. From farming and cultivation to scientific research, the agriculture narrative is fortified by the many roles played by black leaders. USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is the premier food research agency in the world, and it wouldn’t be nearly as successful or impactful if not for its rich, diverse history of scientists.
WASHINGTON, Feb. 25, 2021 – The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced it is investing $42.3 million to help rural residents gain access to health care and educational opportunities (PDF, 255 KB). Rural areas are seeing higher infection and death rates related to COVID-19 due to several factors, including a much higher percentage of underlying conditions, difficulty accessing medical care, and lack of health insurance.
WASHINGTON, Feb. 24, 2021 — In January 2021, President Biden released the National Strategy for the COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness. The plan is driven by science, data, and public health to improve the effectiveness of our nation’s fight against COVID-19 and to restore trust, accountability and a sense of common purpose in our response to the pandemic.
The National Strategy provides a roadmap to guide America out of the worst public health crisis in a century. It is organized around seven goals:
Nature provides numerous benefits that people value. In the conservation world, we call these benefits ecosystem services. On rangelands, some ecosystem services can be bought and sold in traditional market systems – like forages, meat, and other animal products from livestock. Other ecosystem services are not typically bought or sold, but nevertheless have value – like cleaner water, better air quality, and reduced risk from drought or flood. Conservation practices can increase the value of both types of ecosystem services. But, how do we put a dollar value on non-marketable services on rangeland? And how do we tie those dollar values to USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) conservation practices?
Preparation for a large survey does not happen overnight, in a few weeks, or even a year. When it comes to USDA’s flagship data collection effort, the Census of Agriculture, this is especially true. USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) started preparing for the 2022 Census of Agriculture in 2018, when NASS was collecting data for the 2017 Ag Census. NASS’s census, research, and methodology divisions immediately began evaluating content, design, and delivery of the census questionnaire and associated materials for possible improvement. This is the regular cycle of the vital, once-every-five-year Census of Agriculture.
This press release was originally published on the Department of Education website.
USDA has a long history of investing in and supporting our nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The 19 HBCUs established under the Second Morrill Act of 1890, along with the two HBCU land-grant universities established in the original 1862 legislation – University of the District of Columbia and University of the Virgin Islands – are a critical link in ensuring public access to agricultural education, research, and outreach programs are equitably distributed to all Americans. USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) supports research at these institutions with both capacity and competitive funding.
Every February, the APHIS community celebrates Black History Month and honors the many and varied contributions of African Americans to U.S. history. This year’s Black History Month theme is “The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity.” This feature, a personal narrative by APHIS employee Langston Hull, is the first in a two-part series recognizing Black employees at APHIS and their connection to agriculture, family, and the land.