Farmers from every corner of the state tell us they have seen the impact of climate firsthand. This year’s devastating losses from extreme weather have brought home the urgent need to address the climate crisis and its impacts on agriculture.
Across the state, farmers are building soil health and making their farms more resilient to extreme weather. Their efforts are reducing agricultural runoff, protecting pollinators and biodiversity, capturing climate-warming carbon, feeding our communities – and protecting their legacy for the next generation.
But the extremes experienced on the farm are unprecedented.
The rain was relentless this year, due to this ‘prevented plantings’ set a record in 2019 at nearly 20 million acres, which is more than double the previous record in 2011. Farmers of all sizes, including soil health champions, specialty crops growers, and many hemp farmers re-planted their plots, not just once, but in many cases, three times! But not every farmer and farming community has the resources and infrastructure to deal with the impacts.
Which is why now is the time to take climate action.
This past year, farmers in the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) worked together to craft a statement calling for action. A letter telling Congress that climate change presents a fundamental threat to farmers’ ability to remain viable in the years to come. We must act now to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, change to a renewable energy system, and advance a multitude of solutions, including the unique and important climate solutions offered by agriculture. Farmers are advocating for those solutions by urging State and Congressional Representatives to investment in conservation programs that protect farmland, build soil health, and create a shift to climate-smart agriculture.
As a member of NSAC, the Alliance is asking our farmer members to sign this letter. Our coalition’s goal is to collect 4,000 signatures from farmers across the country.
In the Spring of 2020, farmers will deliver the letter to members of Congress, USDA program leaders, and other key decision-makers to urge effective policy action on climate and to help farmers and ranchers weather this storm.
If you are a farmer, please consider signing on to the Climate Action Letter.
If you are an eater, service provider or advocate who is not earning an income from farm products, you can help today too: share this sign-on opportunity with farmers you know.