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Practices

What is farming for climate resilience?

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Photo Credit: (left) Beekeeper with bees (center) Organic Grain in Central Oregon by Dominica Navarro (right) Pigs in Hazelnut pasture by Jaime Thrower

Farming for Climate Resilience Fits All Farms

 

This is not about a single practice or a rigid methodology. Farming for climate resilience requires a holistic approach that includes a diverse set of management practices. Each farm and ranch, with its own unique geography, conditions, and management needs can find solutions that work for their farm. 

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One holistic approach to farming for climate resilience is to focus on the 

4 principles of soil health:

1. Keep the soil covered

2. Minimize soil disturbance and inputs

3. Maximize biodiversity

4. Maintain living roots

Practices that address the 4 principles of soil health include:

  • no till and reduced tillage

  • cover cropping

  • compost application (or other organic amendments like biochar)

  • mulching

  • rotational grazing

  • crop rotation

  • integrated pest and nutrient management

  • agroforestry practices, such as: silvopasture, riparian plantings, alley cropping and hedgerows

  • establishment or maintenance of deep-rooted perennial grasses (most relevant to rangelands)        

These practices not only build healthier soils, they improve water retention and filtration on farms, sequester carbon and better adapt to a fast-changing climate.

Additional resilience approaches include localized (on-site) renewables, irrigation modernization, alternative manure management, and other innovative practices.

Learn more about the science, practices, and opportunities of farming for climate resilience.

The Future is Built On History

 

We recognize these practices and principles are not new. We want to acknowledge the significant historic and current contributions to this work by farmers who are Indigenous, Black, Latino, and other People of Color. A future of farming for climate resilience depends on increasing access to land to these farmers and creating a more just, equitable food system as a whole. 

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