Skip to main content

Wind turbines on Iowa farm
The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the growing season in the Midwest is two weeks longer than it was in 1950, the fire season 60 days longer than it was in 1980, and worsening droughts cost the United States $50 billion from 2011 through 2013. All these impacts mesh with what scientists have been predicting would occur because of climate change. For some years now, they've been saying these impacts—and many others—are going to grow. And that could interfere with the growing of crops.

Coping with the weather is nothing new for farmers, but dealing with climate change requires a different level of adaptation. Consequently, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced Wednesday, the USDA is forming seven Regional Hubs for Risk Adaptation and Mitigation to Climate Change to assist farmers to adapt by providing them science-based data and how to apply it:

"For generations, America's farmers, ranchers and forest landowners have innovated and adapted to challenges. Today, they face a new and more complex threat in the form of a changing and shifting climate, which impacts both our nation's forests and our farmers' bottom lines. ... USDA's Climate Hubs are part of our broad commitment to developing the next generation of climate solutions, so that our agricultural leaders have the modern technologies and tools they need to adapt and succeed in the face of a changing climate." [...]

The Hubs will provide outreach and information to producers on ways to mitigate risks; public education about the risks climate change poses to agriculture, ranchlands and forests; regional climate risk and vulnerability assessments; and centers of climate forecast data and information. They will also link a broad network of partners participating in climate risk adaptation and mitigation, including universities; non-governmental organizations; federal agencies such as the Department of Interior and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; Native Nations and organizations; state departments of environment and agriculture; research centers; farm groups and more.

Please read below the fold for more on the USDA's response to climate change.

The hubs will be located in Ames, IA; Durham, NH; Raleigh, NC; Fort Collins, CO; El Reno, OK; Corvallis, OR; and Las Cruces, NM, with sub-hubs in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico; Davis, CA; and Houghton, MI. They will be overseen by William Hohenstein, director of USDA's Climate Change Program Office.

First announced last summer, the hubs will be one of several initiatives President Obama is taking as part of his Climate Action Plan. While the impact of the hubs may be small, it's the cumulative effect of such initiatives that the administration views as important.

On the whole, farmers are a conservative lot, and they are deeply suspicious of environmental regulations and government bureaucracies that they see as hampering them. That includes regulatory policies meant to address climate change. One of the key objections has to do with restrictions on carbon emissions. While the generally right-wing American Farm Bureau Federation has taken no stance on the regional hubs, its overall view of Obama's proposed climate change policies is a negative one:

Farm Bureau does not support any actions or policy that federal agencies could adopt, or the utilization of any existing authority, to regulate emissions of GHGs. Farm Bureau does not support the current actions of EPA to regulate GHGs from new or existing power plants as it causes increased costs to produce food, feed, fuel and fiber without measurably addressing the issue of climate. Farm Bureau would especially oppose any regulation of GHGs from agricultural sources.
That may not be a direct denial of human-caused climate change, but it's close enough.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 10:42 AM PST.

Also republished by Climate Change SOS, Climate Hawks, and Daily Kos.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Denial is Denial, Whether It's of the Phenomenon (18+ / 0-)

    or of addressing it.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 10:55:26 AM PST

  •  a necessary networked information solution (10+ / 0-)

    less subject to local politics

    Consequently, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced Wednesday, the USDA is forming seven Regional Hubs for Risk Adaptation and Mitigation to Climate Change to use assist farmers to adapt by providing them science-based data and how to apply it:

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:02:26 AM PST

  •  Maybe I read too quickly, but it wasn't clear (7+ / 0-)

    how this is being funded.

    Hopefully by diversion of agricultural subsidies.

    Ideally, in the longer term, through the enactment of an escalating carbon tax that occasionally post in favor of.  Quite futilely, of course.

    •  Which would explain why the Farm Bureau is (12+ / 0-)

      so down on it. My god, they might only get $1.83 subsidy per bushel of wheat instead of $1.85! The outrage! Ultimately that's the source of all business/conservative resistance to dealing with global warming -- they're all worried about short-term profits for themselves.

      Food processed to be nothing more than simple starches with two dozen flavorings and stabilizers added to make it appear to be food isn't "food". It's "feed" -- what you give to livestock to fatten them up for slaughter.

      by ontheleftcoast on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:10:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  On the plus side, this might be an opportunity (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ontheleftcoast, crose

        to reinvigorate the field (no pun intended!) of radiation breeding

        I mean, that's just so cool that they have to be willing to sacrifice 2 cents of their immense profits? Right?

      •  profits already razor thin in agriculture (0+ / 0-)

        Bulk grains, pork bellies, etc. (anything that can be traded as a commodity) simply aren't worth very much because they're all the same, so it's very difficult for Farmer John to justify charging more than Farmer Bill down the road or Farmer !xobile in Africa.  However a First World farm costs a lot more to operate than a Third World farm - especially the very large and heavily mechanized farms that produce the huge crops that allow food in general to be cheap.  This means that if we don't want to grow all the world's food with slave labor in Africa and ship it over - the sheer scale of the operations would in any event reduce the cost savings - the farmers need subsidies to cover the additional costs of equipment, fertilizer, pesticides, irrigation, etc. because the price of their crop is set by the cheapest producer.

        There is a lot of corruption and waste in agricultural subsidies, but the general principle holds true.

        Domestic politics is the continuation of civil war by other means.

        by Visceral on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 12:43:57 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, no, no, a thousand times no (12+ / 0-)

          Those subsidies help displace farmers throughout Mexico when our cheap corn flooded their markets. Those subsidies are forcing mono-culture production which is susceptible to disease and adverse conditions which will be coming from global warming. Those subsidies are billions of dollars going to massive conglomerates and corporations like Cargill and Monsanto. So pardon me if I don't see those as "necessary".

          Food processed to be nothing more than simple starches with two dozen flavorings and stabilizers added to make it appear to be food isn't "food". It's "feed" -- what you give to livestock to fatten them up for slaughter.

          by ontheleftcoast on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 01:06:42 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Absolutely correct. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Roadbed Guy

          Mechanization, hybrid seeds, chemical fertilizers and all are so very expensive that it's hard to believe American farmers ever began using them.
          What were they thinking?  Must have been 'cause of that Communist FDR!

          "Our problem is not that the glass is half empty or half full, but that the 1% claims that it is their glass." ---Stolen from a post on Daily Kos

          by jestbill on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 10:16:40 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Vast Profits in Agriculture (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mokurai, RosyFinch, Roadbed Guy

          Yes, the profit margins in commodity agriculture are thin. But commodities are produced in extremely large volume, so overall profits are very large. Commodities uniformity means they're produced en masse by factories, even when their product is live food. US factory farms are huge, so overhead is spread across very many more units, and directly connected to the largest and richest consumer market. Served by a first class transportation and communications system, a sophisticated government and private management system, on some of the most fertile and reliably irrigated land in the world. Worked by cheap labor, including the large majority of illegal immigrants, in the cheapest labor and environmental protections in the USA.

          There's also a lot of corruption and waste in agricultural subsidies.

          All of which makes US agriculture hundreds of $BILLIONS in profits every year as it feeds the world.

          "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

          by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 05:59:12 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  One would think they'd (5+ / 0-)

        want the valuable information this could provide.  The attitude that we are not all in this together, against the fact that united we could be stronger in solving the issues that face us, makes me sad.

        "You want to be a bit compulsive in your art or craft or whatever you do." Steve Martin

        by Kristin in WA on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 07:43:29 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  One would think that this initiative would (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cotterperson, La Gitane, DocGonzo

          be disseminated throughout the network of county extension programs and not in some rarified localized program.  Why is it that this program is focused only on hubs?

          Why does this program even have to be framed as one that is created to address climate change?  This program should be advanced as a helpful program.

    •  By Taxes on the Blue States (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Roadbed Guy

      It's being funded by taxes and debt, like everything else in the Federal budget. Including the agriculture subsidies.

      Which means working people in the Blue States: the ones who voted for Gore in 2000.

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 05:53:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  'very little new money' (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Roadbed Guy

      today's local report

      Designation as a regional climate hub may bring added attention to the U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station laboratory in Corvallis, but the tag doesn’t come with any fresh funding or additional resources.

      “There’s very little new money here,” said Robert Mangold, the research station’s director.

      "If I’m wanting what I don’t have, I’ve got to do what I ain’t done” from the song “First Light. by Grant Dermody 2010

      by RosyFinch on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 12:19:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The wierd thing about "farmers being conservative" (25+ / 0-)

    is opposite of what I grew up hearing. There was a time when farmers started movements like the Grange. In Minnesota they don't have Democrats they have DFL -- Democrat/Farm/Labor. That's what farmers used to be. But now "farmers" aren't farming they're "agri-business-ing" what ever the hell that means.

    Food processed to be nothing more than simple starches with two dozen flavorings and stabilizers added to make it appear to be food isn't "food". It's "feed" -- what you give to livestock to fatten them up for slaughter.

    by ontheleftcoast on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:05:41 AM PST

  •  So right-wing farmers will deny the trend (4+ / 0-)

    of changing climate and plant "as the Bible tells them", while the reality-based farmers will leverage new information to optimize their yields. I'm guessing this right-wing constituency will undergo dramatic population declines.

    Shall we go? Yes, let's go.

    by whenwego on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:07:21 AM PST

  •  I heard this on the radio this morning. I was (19+ / 0-)

    both happy and sad to hear this news.  

    Happy, because at least there is official action on the climate change CRISIS which is already upon us. Some kind of action is always appreciated.

    Sad, because this particular action is about "adapting" to what may be radically different climate problems within 20-40 years, or even less.  

    So far, most models have under-predicted the speed of climate change or rising temperatures.  That's a problem.  A huge problem.

    Yes, it might be true we cannot make a huge dent in climate change by being proactive at this point, but we have to try. We need government action to require compliance with clear guidelines. There was just a report the other day that the US Northeast could cut their carbon emissions by 75% in short order.

    Let's get ON that bandwagon. Let's cut emissions drastically.  And then let's have some major government research on sequestering carbon from the atmosphere.  What will work?  From vast tree farms to "everyone add a tree" to your backyard to whatever weird scientific process can be created, we need that now.

    Climate change is something most people have in the back of their head (if they have a mind), but we really need it to be front and center, because the Crisis is already upon us.

    "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

    by YucatanMan on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:08:04 AM PST

    •  The USDA represents industrialized agriculture. (11+ / 0-)

      This is kind of like McDonald's and Cargill teaming up with WWF (to use their panda logo) to provide a definition of "sustainable beef" for themselves.  Of course, one wants to hope that at least some good it going to come out of this, yet at the same time one remains skeptical.

      If you look at the full lifecycle of industrialize agriculture, the pollution and carbon footprint would shock most Americans.  They just don't know what's going on ... they see a piece of beef in the store and they think of a old McDonald and his white picket fence out in the country.  They don't see thousand of animals crammed together for three years into a building with no windows standing in several inches of excrement.  They don't see the CAFO ponds, which are literally lagoons of animal s**t that sits there.  They don't see the chemical companies mining all over the world and the factories needed to create the billions of gallons of herbicides, pesticides, fertilizers, (and antibiotics) that go into growing the GMO corn & soy feed for the animals.

      Until Americans start putting money into sustainable, local foods, we are going to continue to be a part of the problem rather than the solution.  People can start by eating less meat and dairy.  

      •  "sustainable beef" would still be an improvement (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        YucatanMan, La Gitane

        At the end of the day, I'd rather people do the right thing for the wrong reason.  By all means keep a chicken in your backyard and grow some herbs in your window, but recognize that commercial farming and food production is a very different ballgame.

        Domestic politics is the continuation of civil war by other means.

        by Visceral on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 12:47:23 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I agree (5+ / 0-)

        My heart fell when I read this because it seems like Vilsek (Monsanto exec) will be doubling down on the industrial system that ought to be scrapped.

        If we put the kind of money into small scale organic farming rather than lining the pockets of those who practice unsustainable agrochemical practices, we would be on our way to really adapting.

        We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

        by occupystephanie on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 05:16:58 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  They can't scrap the industrial system (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          occupystephanie

          It's too big an edifice and it will have to come crashing down all by itself.  And it will.  

          It won't crash from the degradation of topsoil, that takes too long, and there is still topsoil left.

          It won't crash from lack of fossil fuel inputs, there will be fracked gas to make fertilizer from and tar sands oil to power the diesel machinery.

          It won't crash from pests or disease, they will just spray more fungicide/pesticide/herbicide and pass along the cost.

          So what's left to make it crash?  Water.  The 2012 drought in the Midwest that hit crop yields hard may be a peek into the future of agriculture.  We are lucky that 2013 was a bumper crop year, but that has just delayed the day of reckoning.  The next drought year in the Midwest may outdo 2012, and then where will we be?

          •  You are likely right about the water (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            andersr, RosyFinch, julesrules39

            Good organic soil holds water much better than chemically fertilized soil. That fact ought to be included in any fight to adapt to climate change.

            The Too Big to Fail industrial model of agriculture will fail and it will fail us suddenly. We could be transitioning to better forms of agriculture now but it seems we will wait until disaster strikes.

            We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

            by occupystephanie on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 09:29:19 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I don't have the specific reference, (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              occupystephanie, julesrules39

              but there was a post recently that identified some farmers who have increased the organic material in there fields by planting cover crops, and returning organic material to the soil.

              The post identified there ability to weather the drought more successfully than neighboring farms that just utilized the chemical methods.

              Anyone know the post I am remembering?

              "Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please" Mark Twain

              by andersr on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 11:01:34 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Familar with the concept (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                julesrules39

                It's true. I think the worst thing about chemically intensive agriculture is its ignorance of the health of the soil and its many organisms and ingredients that naturally make up soil fertility.

                There is a video out there called Symphony of the Soil which had a little vignette showing four beakers of soil. The water into the chemical soil ran off. The water into the organic soil completely soaked in leaving no runoff.

                I use cover crops on my own little raised beds. It puts nitrogen into the soil and organic matter.

                Lots of these strategies like crop rotation have been around for eons. We need that kind of know how.

                We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

                by occupystephanie on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 12:33:12 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I recently heard of a company that is cutting out (0+ / 0-)

                  the distribuion chain/pollution by growing tomatoes and greens (spring mix) on or near the store using hydroponics.  The hydroponic farms that they build uses less water (25x less for tomatoes and 7x less for greens).  I love this concept.

    •  So -- let's oppose KXL, we everything we have. (7+ / 0-)

      Right now, that means flooding the Ed Show (especially on radio -- I couldn't even listen to him for more than 2 minutes this morning without having to change the channel out of sheer disgust and frustration), as he is stubbornly and inexplicably clinging to RW talking points to justify his position.

      If for now other reason than the fact that the Koch brothers stand to more than double their existing fortune if KXL is approved (and will use that extra $100 billion to undermine all efforts to do anything to mitigate the climate chaos that is already upon us), KXL must  be opposed, ESPECIALLY when the cheerleading is coming from "our side".

      "We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few. But we can't have both." - Justice Louis Brandeis

      by flitedocnm on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 12:15:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ed's Union Cronies (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        flitedocnm

        Midwest labor unions have decided that a couple thousand jobs for a year or two are worth those workers loving in a polluted dustbowl the rest of their (and their descendants') lives. So they've joined the Koch cartel and TransCanada to push "jobs". Ed Schultz goes where the union agenda says. MS-NBC prefers any storyline that leads liberals down the Koch path.

        "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

        by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 06:28:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Real info or denier spin? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LinSea, occupystephanie, Back In Blue

    I can't trust current officials to deviate from their Koch script.

  •  How many CC denying farmers will be (5+ / 0-)

    the first with in line their hands out for $$$ assistance when their crops croak due to extreme weather?  
     

    farmers are a conservative lot, and they are deeply suspicious of environmental regulations and government bureaucracies that they see as hampering them.
     As usual, they'd cut off their nose to spite their face rather than get knowledge and assistance from the govt. (particulary this current one) intended to help them.

    My Karma just ran over your Dogma

    by FoundingFatherDAR on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:09:42 AM PST

    •  Ask the california farmers who froze this winter (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LinSea, Onomastic, LillithMc, La Gitane

      and also are going through a drought.

      The answer will come when records are released, I suppose.

      It's nice that we'll be able to eat, but terrible that the persistent denial of Climate Change is the common thread through the farm community.

      202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

      by cany on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:32:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Farming can be part of the solution to... (9+ / 0-)

    ...global warming but the American Farm Bureau is into sabotaging any effort;

    Can Farming Provide a Solution to Climate Change?

    The idea is simple: The soil is one of the best places to put the carbon dioxide causing climate change, which has reached new highs in the atmosphere. Plants help put the carbon into the soil through photosynthesis—knitting CO2 and water into carbohydrates using the power of sunlight. And farmers can boost the process further by turning some of those plants into charcoal—or biochar, as advocates of the approach like to call it.
    Between 2003 and 2010 Miller’s program covered roughly 810,000 hectares of farmland, more than two million hectares of rangeland and around 400,000 hectares of forest. "We were gearing up for millions of tons of carbon offset credits a year," Miller recalls. The service had plans to go national by selling credits in a proposed nationwide cap-and-trade program, although the approach did face criticism from environmentalists, among others. "It wasn't about generating a lot of money,” Miller says. “It was about a low-cost solution to climate change."
    Part of the reason that the climate legislation fell short is that the American Farm Bureau, of which the IFB is a part, pulled its support at the last moment. "We do think cap-and-trade would significantly impact the agriculture industry," particularly in terms of energy costs, explains Mace Thornton, a Farm Bureau spokesperson. The organization, he adds, also has "concerns about agricultural lands being used as a carbon sink and taking it out of food production."

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:11:46 AM PST

    •  The Agriculture Industry (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dicentra

      Well obviously the part of the agriculture industry that grows things would benefit from the credits they produce. The land sinking carbon is healthier and more productive.

      It's the oil and chemical corps part of the agriculture industry that would have "significant impact" - higher costs. They produce carbon pollution that has to be offset by credits, which they'd have to buy.

      Meanwhile, the higher carbon soil needs less fuel and chemicals to produce.

      So the American Farm Bureau is just another captured oil/chemical industry promotion agency.

      Obama's Executive Branch: climate change you can believe in.

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 06:33:42 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  An insight into the future (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LinSea, Eric Nelson, Onomastic

    Article for the LA Times, showing what could happen.
    http://www.latimes.com/...

  •  Denial of climate change is as much about politics (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LinSea, Onomastic, White Buffalo, JeffW

    as it is religion.

    Part of the reason that denialists cling to hard to this is due to their religion, even when faced with irrefutable disasterous--right in their front yard-proof.

    In the Buckle(s) of the Bible Belt, claiming kinship with environmentalist is like admitting that one dabbles in Satanism.

    Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

    by GreenMother on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:34:08 AM PST

    •  Yep. There is a lot of belief in the bumper (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GreenMother, jfromga, JeffW

      sticker I recently saw: God is in control.

      If that's the case, God is truly in need of a vacation and re-training.

      202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

      by cany on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 11:38:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  in the same way that anti XL pipeline is religion. (0+ / 0-)

      Koch brothers, aquifer, dirty.

      “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

      by ban nock on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 01:50:45 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Science (0+ / 0-)

        No, anti-XL pipeline is science and self preservation.

        The Koch brothers, polluted/depleted aquifer, and dirty fuel are real.

        Your glib denial is the rigid ideology here.

        "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

        by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 06:35:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Bullshit. You know better than that (0+ / 0-)

        The people do not have confidence in an underregulated system that cannot ensure a) that such pipelines receive appropriate maintenance and inspections and b) that the legal system will be able to force these companies to perform a cleanup after the pipe breaks, which it will, and c) that it is even possible to remove all the pollutants from the environment in an attempt to clean after a spill.

        And that does not even address the carbon footprint of focusing on OIL at the expense of cleaner, alternative energies, urban planning, and mass transit.

        Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

        by GreenMother on Sat Feb 08, 2014 at 07:17:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I can't find it now but the Association of Fish (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    occupystephanie, worldlotus

    and Wildlife Agencies came up with a study maybe 5 years ago predicting which species would decline or grow and where and what the various states could do to mitigate the effects.

    I think much of climate denialism is cultural and political which is really too bad, it keeps us from working on problems. I doubt most people whether left right or center have many doubts about climate change. The trick is finding space to work together.

    “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

    by ban nock on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 01:45:24 PM PST

  •  Could subsidies remove farmer objections to regs? (0+ / 0-)

    The Farm Bureau reportedly bases its objection to carbon regs on the grounds of costs that farmers would have to bear as a result of that regulation.  Perhaps some subsidies could be devised to ease their technological transition?

    We'll all pay a lot more if they continue business as usual.

  •  The USDA'a approach is predictably couched (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, andersr, marsanges

    in the outdated model of agrochemical industrial farming and appears to be yet another shovel full of money for corporate farming.

    I wish they would look further than the United States for some real knowledge-based solutions.

    Such as the 2013 UN report: "Wake up Before it is Too Late: Make Agriculture Truly Sustainable Now for Food Security in a Changing Climate.”

    The report urged both developed and developing nations to shift from a "green revolution" to a "truly ecological intensification" approach. They suggested widespread small scale organic farming. For one thing, organic soils hold water better.

    Here we are again, ignoring the health of our soil upon which all life depends. Chemicals have never been the answer.

    We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

    by occupystephanie on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 03:14:43 PM PST

  •  Farm bureau sued to try and stop clean (4+ / 0-)

    Water programs in the Chesapeake watershed.

    Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

    by dadadata on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 06:26:36 PM PST

  •  if only the deniers would play alpha centauri... (0+ / 0-)

    they'd understand we need to build more forests!

  •  Mitigation is not and has never been a solution (0+ / 0-)

    to a sustainable, healthy environment.

  •  Oh my.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, LillithMc
    to assist farmers to adapt by providing them science-based data
    This should cause some hissy-fits among Republicans who prefer their data to be based on non-science sources.
  •  Farmers aren't suspicious of crop insurance (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LillithMc

    and I guarantee you that is a huge government bureaucracy.

    Show me a farmer who doesn't visit the local FSA office and I'll show you a farmer who won't be farming long.

  •  Make farm subsidies contingent on compliance (0+ / 0-)

    Seems easy enough.

  •  Isn't an El Nino predicted for this year (0+ / 0-)

    That means drought. The bad 'weather' may stick around for a while.

  •  I have found that, while the ag organizations may (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades

    be conservative, that individually, farmers will try to do the right thing.  After all, the conservation of water and other resources, maintaining good water quality, conserving energy all go far to reducing their costs.  And when this is explained to them, they respond positively.

    It is interesting that I haven't seen anything about this before.  And I work for the USDA in Davis.

  •  Disappointed by some of the comments in this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Errol, LillithMc

    thread. A lot of misunderstanding about the business.

    Yes, farmers are a conservative bunch, but they're not going to turn down help in the current climate, and they really need some help right now.

    Also, the USDA isn't just another bureaucratic agency that can't get anything right. They don't get everything right, but they truly do care about the people that they serve. It's important to remember that in a lot of ways there hands are tied due to a do-nothing, anti-government Congress.

    There are a lot of things going on in agriculture right now, but it's important to keep in mind that while we tend to think of most crops coming from behemoth corporations, that's not necessarily the case. It's important to distinguish between agri-business corporations and locally owned farms. They are linked, but separate entities with (often) competing interests.

    P.S. I am not a crackpot.

    by BoiseBlue on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 08:08:35 PM PST

    •  I thought (0+ / 0-)

      the average age of farmers was still going up.

      If so, who will take their places?  Land and equipment are so expensive that the only people in line to do that are corporate "farmers".

      Even if the old farmers really were Amish style conservatives, they are going to be in the minority soon.

      "Our problem is not that the glass is half empty or half full, but that the 1% claims that it is their glass." ---Stolen from a post on Daily Kos

      by jestbill on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 10:42:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  conservation (0+ / 0-)

    If farmers truly are conservative, we should appeal to their genuine love of living soil with crops and additives that improve it, not destroy it.  

    As long as a Monsanto Executive is running the huge, USDA, the farmer gets Monsanto seeds and additives,  whether they like it or not.

     Rather than merely identifying this, we must demonstrate to farmers that they can move beyond Monsanto--- to conserve the soil for their families and for coming generations.

    If that is conservative, count me in.  

  •  I think every one of the cities where USDA (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NoMoreLies, LillithMc

    is planning a climate change office are university towns.

  •  Good idea (0+ / 0-)

    CA produces much food that may not be viable if this drought is very bad.  The rest of the country could begin to fill the gap by moving away from big corporate agriculture and encouraging local farms and local foods.

  •  Al Gore's USDA (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LillithMc

    Every time I see the Federal government finally start to do something realistic to cope with climate change I think of how Al Gore would have done it a decade earlier. A decade longer dealing with the Greenhouse, instead of denying it and torching Iraq into it, would have saved countless lives and perhaps civilization itself.

    Watching the places in the country that still reject Gore and the Greenhouse warnings get bailed out by those of us living in reality really leaves me without compassion for them taking the consequences they've insisted on making for all of us.

    12 years too late. And we're barely getting started, as the main culprits fight us harder than ever.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 05:51:05 AM PST

  •  Global Change Research Act of 1990 (0+ / 0-)

    Although not mentioned, I wonder if this action by the USDA is in keeping with the Global Change Research Act of 1990.  It was an act passed by Congress and signed into law by Bush Senior but sat on the shelf unimplemented by Clinton and Bush Jr. until Obama began to implement it during the first year of his Presidency.  Few people know about it nor are aware that Obama has been quietly  implementing it under the radar.

    The Act requires that all 13 Administrative agencies take into account Climate Change during rule making and writing of regulations.  It requires agencies to come up with strategies of mitigation and adaptation.

    http://www.globalchange.gov/...

  •  I am always pleased to see programs (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LillithMc

    that focus on real money for real people taking the side of reality on Global Warming. ("Climate Change" is the Frank Luntz name for it.) Farmers who adapt will survive better. Evolution in action! Who would believe in that?

    Just like the financial markets that are turning away from coal, again because real money is at stake, not just short-term political power.

    Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

    by Mokurai on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 09:17:34 AM PST

  •  These Hubs Are A very Good Idea (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LillithMc

    For two reasons. One of course is even though global warming/climate change denial is rampant its very real and since for right now at least there's very little we can do to directly combat our contributions to that devastation we do need to be taking steps to mitigate it.

    But I also see another advantage here in that once farmers, ranchers, and other land users begin to see the advantages of these hubs they might be more receptive to understanding and accepting why we need them and finally begin to accept the fact that global warming/climate change is very real and something we need to address for our own survival.

    Collect Different Days

    by Homers24 on Thu Feb 06, 2014 at 09:21:47 AM PST

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site