CalCAN is a statewide coalition that advances policy to realize the powerful climate solutions offered by sustainable and organic agriculture.
We represent a statewide network of sustainable farmers and ranchers and allied organizations, agricultural professionals, scientists, and advocates.
CalCAN seeks a widespread transition to sustainable and organic agricultural systems that are increasingly resilient, environmentally sound and healthy, and that provide climate benefits, protect our natural resources, sustain our food security, provide for economically vibrant agricultural communities, and maintain our finite agricultural lands.
Our Guiding Principles:
- Increasing the use of organic and sustainable agriculture practices offers multiple environmental and public health benefits for all Californians, urban and rural.
- Policy change can drive a widespread transition to sustainable and organic agricultural practices.
- To achieve meaningful policy change that works on the ground, those who implement the change and/or are directly impacted by the change must be consulted and engaged in leadership roles.
- Agricultural sustainability is a continuum, and improvements can be made on all farms.
- Agriculture policy and climate policy must explicitly address the needs of small and medium-scale farmers as well as people of color, women, low-income/low-wealth, farmworkers and other marginalized populations that have been that systematically disenfranchised by generations of injustices and health inequities.
- Because public resources should benefit the public good, and because there is public value in addressing historical injustice, public funding to mitigate and adapt to climate change should be prioritized for small and medium-scale, diversified, and systematically disenfranchised farmers.
Why focus on policy?
We seek a fundamental shift in California’s farming system from an industrial, chemically intensive approach to one that is biologically integrated, ecologically sustainable and resilient. To achieve this widespread shift, we use the strategic lever of policy to support California farmers and ranchers in mitigating and adapting to climate change.
The California policy context—with its ambitious climate goals, policies and funding sources—provides resources to invest in agricultural management practices that reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, sequester carbon and facilitate climate adaptation. However, making a transition to the most climate-friendly practices requires technical assistance, research, education and financial incentives. CalCAN develops and advances policies that put such resources in the hands of farmers and ranchers to transition to practices that leave the planet better.
How can I get involved?
At CalCAN, we know that with sufficient resources and incentives, climate-friendly agricultural practices can be widely adopted and will deliver economic, ecological, health and social benefits to rural and urban Californians alike, blazing a trail for the inclusion of agricultural climate solutions in other states and countries.