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Daily News Blog

26
Aug

Take Action: Help Organic Farmers Save the Planet—Support the Climate Stewardship Act

(Beyond Pesticides, August 26, 2019) U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) recently released draft legislation that will – among other initiatives – promote carbon-sequestering practices in agriculture. The draft Climate Stewardship Act includes farmers as a critical component in the response to the climate crisis by encouraging “carbon farming” through incentives, training, and research. U.S. Representative Deb Haaland (D-NM) is championing companion legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill will likely be introduced in September when Congress reconvenes.

Ask your U.S. Representative and Senators to Co-sponsor the Climate Stewardship Act and Help Farmers Save the Planet.

July of 2019 was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth. The last time atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were this high (over 415 ppm) was during the Pliocene period – between 5.3 and 2.6 million years ago. The best time to have addressed global warming was 20 years ago, but the second-best time is now. Organic, regenerative agricultural practices help mend the earth from the ground up.

In addition to incentivizing soil health practices that organic farmers already employ, the bill adds $75,000,000 to the organic research and extension initiative (OREI). The bill contains a requirement that no less than 50% of these funds apply to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing resilience in the agricultural sector by improving soil health and capturing increased carbon levels in the soil (carbon sequestration).

new United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC) report named agriculture and forestry as a significant net source of greenhouse gas emissions, “contributing to about 22% of anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) combined as CO2 equivalents in 2007 to 2016.” At the same time, soil is a huge potential carbon sink. The potential for agricultural practices to reduce climate change has been an issue raised by several Presidential candidates.

Insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, and synthetic fertilizers disrupt microbial communities and prevent the kind of carbon-capturing root and symbiotic mycorrhizal fungi systems that are necessary to offset climate change. They harm non-target organisms, including earthworms that assist with nutrient cycling, thereby diminishing soil health.

A 2017 study finds that organic farming practices sequester more carbon than chemical-intensive practices. Rodale Institute’s Farming Systems Trial has evidenced organic systems that, “use 45% less energy, release 40% fewer carbon emissions, and have the potential to produce yields up to 40% higher in times of drought over conventional [chemical-intensive] systems.”

This legislation will promote organic and regenerative farming practices, which are crucial to sustainably feeding the world while sequestering carbon.

“After another year of extreme weather, no one understands the impacts of climate change better than our family farmers and ranchers,” says Senator Booker. “While our farmers face unique impacts from climate change, our farmers are also uniquely positioned to capture and store carbon in the ground, produce clean energy, and to reduce emissions. The same farmland practices that store carbon and reduce emissions also improve the ability of our farms to withstand extreme weather, reduce water pollution and protect drinking water, and reduce flood damages by storing and slowly releasing flood waters.”

Ask your U.S. Representative and Senators to Co-sponsor the Climate Stewardship Act and Help Farmers Save the Planet.

Letter to Congress

I am writing to ask that you consider co-sponsoring the Climate Stewardship Act in advance of the bill’s introduction in September.

Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Representative Deb Haaland (D-NM) recently released draft legislation that will – among other initiatives – promote carbon-sequestering practices in agriculture. The Climate Stewardship Act includes farmers as a critical component in the response to the climate crisis by encouraging “carbon farming” through incentives, training, and research.

July of 2019 was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth. The last time atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were this high (over 415 ppm) was during the Pliocene period – between 5.3 and 2.6 million years ago. The best time to have addressed global warming was 20 years ago, but the second-best time is now. Organic, regenerative agricultural practices help mend the Earth from the ground up.

A new IPPC report named agriculture and forestry as a significant net source of greenhouse gas emissions, “contributing to about 22% of anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) combined as CO2 equivalents in 2007 to 2016.” At the same time, soil is a huge potential carbon sink. The potential for agricultural practices to reduce climate change has been an issue raised by several Presidential candidates.

Insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, and synthetic fertilizers disrupt microbial communities and prevent the kind of carbon-capturing root and symbiotic mycorrhizal fungi systems that are necessary to offset climate change. They harm non-target organisms, including earthworms that assist with nutrient cycling, thereby diminishing soil health.

A 2017 study finds that organic farming practices sequester more carbon than conventional. Rodale Institute’s Farming Systems Trial has evidenced organic systems that, “use 45% less energy, release 40% fewer carbon emissions, and have the potential to produce yields up to 40% higher in times of drought over conventional [chemical-intensive] systems.”

This legislation will promote organic and regenerative farming practices, which are crucial to sustainably feeding the world while sequestering carbon. Please co-sponsor the Climate Stewardship Act and help farmers save the planet.

Thank you.

 

Share

2 Responses to “Take Action: Help Organic Farmers Save the Planet—Support the Climate Stewardship Act”

  1. 1
    Susan Sorkenn Says:

    Please support the Climate Stewardship Act! Our country and world need it.

  2. 2
    Cecile Lemay Says:

    HELP FARMERS SAVE THE PLANET!! WE ALL NEED FOOD INCLUDING ALL POLITICIANS & PLANTS ARE THE LUNGS FOR THE EARTH!! PLANTS ARE NECESSARY TO KEEP ALL LIFE ALIVE!! IF YOU CAN’T OR WON’T DO IT FOR YOURSELVES, AT LEAST DO IT FOR YOUR OWN DESCENDANTS!!

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