August 30, 2018

Promoting Climate-Friendly Agriculture for the Benefit of Farmers, Rural Communities, and the Environment

Peter H. Lehner and Nathan A. Rosenberg

Agriculture covers 61 percent of the contiguous United States and is responsible for 8 percent of the nation’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Despite the dependence of many rural communities on a thriving agriculture sector—not to mention society’s dependence on the production of affordable nutritious food—policy makers have given little consideration to agriculture’s growing vulnerability to climate change. Nor have policy makers reckoned with the sector’s substantial contribution to U.S. GHG emissions. The federal government can help give farmers the tools they need to make their farms more climate resilient—while turning agriculture into a net carbon sink—through an ambitious research agenda.

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