American Farmland Trust Commends House Hearing on Climate Change and Agriculture
American Farmland Trust commends Chairman David Scott (D-GA) on convening the House Agriculture Committee’s thorough hearing on Climate Change and the U.S. Agriculture and Forestry Sectors. The hearing underscored the Committee’s bipartisan dedication to making US agriculture more climate-friendly and ensuring that farmers and ranchers are part of the solution.
The witnesses drew attention to the ways in which climate change is already impacting our nation’s farmers and ranchers, and how agriculture—especially when it includes regenerative practices—can play a key role in mitigating climate change. They also spoke to the importance of farmer education and outreach, the need for additional research and quicker deployment of new technologies, and the necessity of creating additional incentives that work for all farmers regardless of scale, region, or production system.
These testimonies align closely with what AFT has heard from farmers and ranchers across the nation –that in order to do this critical work, they first need incentives and on-the-ground support. As part of this effort, AFT has been working on numerous fronts to make regenerative agriculture a reality. AFT’s recent report highlights the effectiveness of no-till and cover crops in sequestering carbon, as well as improving overall soil health and water quality. The report’s sequestration and greenhouse gas reduction estimates were generated using the CaRPE tool which was developed by AFT in partnership with the USDA Agricultural Research Service. Last fall, AFT’s Dr. Jen Moore, Climate Initiative Director, testified for the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis on the ability of regenerative agricultural practices to address climate change. In AFT’s transition recommendations to the new Administration, AFT proposed a National Cover Crop Initiative to enable more farmers to reap the benefits of the practice on their land. Most recently, AFT has also been engaging in groundbreaking work with female non-operating landowners across the country to encourage their tenants to adopt regenerative practices.
AFT is grateful to the panelists for their powerful testimonies, and applauds the Committee’s bipartisan recognition that farmers, ranchers, and other land stewards are critical allies in fighting climate change. We look forward to working on both sides of the aisle to achieve lasting solutions.