Farm Policy Roundup—September 26, 2014

American Farmland Trust Supports Climate Smart Agriculture Initiative

corn-in-dry-fieldAmerican Farmland Trust Supports Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture
New partnerships to address climate change were announced this week at the United Nations Climate Summit, including the Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture. Held in New York, the U.N. Climate Summit was attended by leaders from around the globe as well as finance, business, civil society and local leaders from public and private sectors.  The summit sets the stage for an ambitious global agreement by 2015 that limits the world to a less than 2-degree Celsius rise in global temperature.

One outcome of the summit is the Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture. The Alliance is a new effort to promote greater international engagement on ways agriculture can help mitigate the impact of climate change. The Alliance brings together governments, businesses, farmers’ organizations, civil society groups, research bodies and intergovernmental entities to address food security in the face of climate change.

American Farmland Trust is supporting this effort through the North American Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture which was also announced at the U.N. Climate Summit. The three-year North American initiative will give farmers, ranchers and foresters the opportunity to collaborate with industry, academia, government and NGO partners in developing ways to improve production resiliency and mitigate current and future risks of changing climatic conditions.

Climate change is an issue that crosses AFT’s mission areas of protecting farmland, promoting sound farming practices and keeping farmers on the land. For this reason, AFT has supported action on climate change that involves agricultural- and farmland-based strategies. The systems and the land we depend on for food are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change including drought, disease and changing growing patterns. At the same time, protecting and improving the land as well as more efficient systems offer climate solutions to build resiliency in our soils and food production. Engaging in the newly formed Alliance will provide an opportunity to address both the causes and consequences of a changing climate.

More information is on the web about the Global Alliance and the North American Alliance.

USDA Under Secretary to Keynote AFT’s Farmland, Food and Livable Communities Conference

registernowGREENUnited States Department of Agriculture Under Secretary Robert Bonnie will keynote AFT’s Farmland, Food and Livable Communities conference in Lexington, Kentucky next month.

A Kentucky native, Under Secretary Bonnie oversees the Forest Service and Natural Resources Conservation Service on a variety of natural resource issues, working closely with the Farm Service Agency. He also served as Senior Advisor to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack for environment and climate change.

We hope you will join us in Lexington to hear from Under Secretary Bonnie as well as learn, connect and strategize about the future of food, agriculture and conservation.  Keynote and plenary workshop sessions will feature more than 70 local and national thought leaders.  Learn more about best-in-class practices, planning and policy development.  AICP Certification Maintenance credits are available.

Other conference highlights include bus tours—Urban, Bourbon & Brew and Saving the Bluegrass; a Kentucky Proud reception; and Farm Fresh banquet.  Reconnect with friends and colleagues and enjoy Kentucky’s famous hospitality.

For more information, visit

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