Former Secretary of Agriculture Highlights Climate Change Challenges & Opportunities

Posted on Monday, December 13th, 2010 by Renata Brillinger

In a recent opinion column of the Sacramento Bee,  Rich Rominger, former Secretary of CDFA and Deputy Secretary of USDA, outlined how the challenges and opportunities facing California agriculture will require Governor-elect Jerry Brown’s leadership.

Central to Mr. Rominger’s message is the importance of agriculture to the California economy and its the vulnerability to a changing climate.

Mr. Rominger laid out a challenging context — diminishing farmland, dependence on an outdated water supply system, climate change impacts ranging from decreased water supply to extreme weather events and increased pest pressures, and susceptibility to energy price shocks and cost increases.

He also offered some hope and encouragement for innovation. There is great potential for reducing greenhouse gas emissions on California’s farm and rangeland, producing renewable energy on farms, and supporting water conservation and efficiency. He called for more resources to support the many challenges faced by agriculture, and for bold leadership from the new Governor on both climate and agricultural policy.

CalCAN developed a set of policy recommendations that provide specific proposals for responding to many of the challenges and opportunities that the former Secretary describes. We hope you will join us in working to realize these initiatives.

Click here to view Rich Rominger’s full opinion column.

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