Research and planning are the foundations for effective, meaningful climate and agriculture policy.
CalCAN tracks all of these climate plans and climate research funding programs and provides input to deliver the perspectives and expertise of sustainable and organic agriculture.
California’s Climate Mitigation Plans
The California Air Resources Board produces a Scoping Plan every five years to provide a roadmap for how the state will achieve its mandated greenhouse gas emissions reductions target of 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. The focus of the Scoping Plan has historically been on tailpipe and urban related emission reduction strategies, but that is changing. Read more about CalCAN’s input on the 2017 Scoping Plan.
In 2018, the state began work on an interagency effort to characterize carbon sequestration opportunities in the state’s natural and working lands. The January 2019 Draft of the California 2030 Natural and Working Lands Climate Change Implementation Plan describes how the state will deepen and expand its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve carbon sinks in agricultural lands, forests, wetlands and open space. Read more about CalCAN’s input on the plan.
California’s Climate Adaptation Plans
Approximately every two years the California Natural Resources Agency updates its Safeguarding California report which guides the work of various state agencies to protect communities in California from climate change. The most recent climate adaptation plan update was released in January 2018.
The state has completed four Climate Change Assessments to provide information about expected climate impacts at a regionally-relevant scale. Find the latest assessment here, released in August 2018. A Statewide Summary Report was released in January of 2019, translating main findings from the fourth climate assessment into actionable information.
In 2013, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) produced “Climate Change Consortium for Specialty Crops: Impacts and Strategies for Resilience” after a year long process of agricultural trade groups and agricultural experts met with climate scientists. CalCAN participated in the CDFA Roundtable on Climate Change Adaptation for Agriculture.
Climate Change and Agriculture Research
Much of the state’s climate change and agriculture research was funded by the now-defunct Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) Program, coordinated by the California Energy Commission. Much of that research was the bedrock for the development of the current Climate Smart Agriculture programs. Today, there is a mix of state funded research programs that include an agricultural focus, but none offer as comprehensive funding strategy to address outstanding climate change and agriculture issues as the former PIER program once did.