New England Climate and Agriculture
Our team supports farmers in addressing climate change by facilitating farmer-centered learning opportunities, offering targeted technical assistance, partnering on regional research, and providing direct financial support to growers.
As farms in New England adapt to the new challenges associated with a changing climate, they are increasingly invested in growing natural climate solutions to sequester carbon and reduce emissions. Our New England programs accelerate learning about farm management approaches that help address climate change, while also providing the resources and training farmers need to adopt new practices and approaches. Central to our work is a solid commitment to collaboration, listening, and integrating farmers’ knowledge.
. Building soil health is the primary strategy that farmers in New England already use to address the increased incidence of drought and heavy precipitation events, leveraging the way biological activity in the soil can enhance soil structure, limit erosion, improve water infiltration, and increase plant available water. This enhanced biological cycling can also increase soil carbon content, making soil health an important strategy that links carbon drawdown with climate adaptation. While soil health is not the only strategy farmers use to enhance climate resilience in New England Agriculture, it is a natural starting point for much of our work, including the Massachusetts Coordinated Soil Health Program, the Farmer Led Innovations in Reduced Tillage Project, Soil Health Peer Cohorts, and more.
Our Western New England Regenerative Agriculture RCPP project provides technical, financial and educational resources to enhance soil health, water quality, and biodiversity on livestock farms in the extended Connecticut River Valley across four New England States.
Solar power is an important part of the path to decarbonization in our region, and we believe that it is important to be thoughtful and proactive about how the growth of solar interfaces with farms. We collaborate with farmers, researchers and other stakeholders to identify the best practices for siting solar panels, and explore the potential for agrivoltaics on farms.