A group of farmers and sustainable agriculture groups are calling on Governor Jerry Brown to look to California farms and ranches as he plans for aggressive action on climate change during his fourth term.
A report just released by CalCAN recommends 28 ways the Brown Administration can support agriculture in reducing greenhouse gas emissions while building more resilience to drought and extreme weather. Growing Solutions: Climate Change and Agriculture Recommendations to the California Governor was crafted by a group of farmers, researchers and agriculture experts. It is a policy toolkit that taps the power of the state’s working lands to provide tangible, affordable climate solutions.
The release of Growing Solutions comes on the heels of the Governor’s inaugural address in which he made mention of the climate solutions to be gained on California farms and ranches, and the release of his 2015-16 budget draft (more in our Jan. 15 blog).
Governor Brown’s budget proposal includes some funding for agricultural climate efforts, but it falls far short of what is needed. CalCAN’s report offers a comprehensive vision for how the Brown Administration can support and invest in on-farm renewable energy and energy efficiency, water stewardship, farmland conservation, climate-friendly farming practices, and farmworker well-being. We maintain that California cannot achieve its ambitious climate goals without agriculture.
Growing Solutions includes policy recommendations on the following subjects:
- Farm Management Strategies for Mitigating Climate Change
- On-Farm Renewable Energy
- Agricultural Water Stewardship
- On-Farm Energy & Water Efficiency
- Compost Benefits in Agriculture
- Agricultural Land Conservation
- Climate Resilient Agriculture
- Research, Technical Assistance and Planning
- California Farmworkers
One of CalCAN’s farmer advisors and a reviewer on Growing Solutions, Judith Redmond of Full Belly Farm, says this about the role of agriculture in climate protection: “In addition to green buildings, electric vehicles and forest protection, we need farmers to join the fight against climate change. Their unique solutions also bring food security, jobs, improved air and water quality, and healthy communities.”