This post is part of the Environmental Law Review Syndicate.
The Farm Bill affects nearly every aspect of agriculture and forestry in the United States. Therefore, its next reauthorization offers an important opportunity to better manage the risks of climate change on farms, forests, and ranches by supporting resilience practices that also offer greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions.
Agriculture is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, including rising temperatures, changes in rainfall and pest migration patterns, extreme weather events, and drought. In addition to being heavily affected by climate change, agriculture is also a significant contributor to climate change. Agricultural practices are responsible for about eight percent of U.S. GHG emissions. Estimates of total food system emissions, which include the CO2 emissions from energy use and transportation, increase the agricultural industry’s proportion of U.S. GHG emissions to between 19 and 29 percent.