At a recent conference at Michigan State’s Agricultural Research station, I observed ongoing research that may help future farmers make choices among the many types of soil management practices. A guiding principle is that Ag policy too often encourages destructive farming practices, and we should be looking for ways to help farmers become the “white hat guys” in the climate story, which is what they want to be.
The message from the Midwest is clear: Chemical-intensive, industrial-scale farming is vulnerable to spells of hot, dry weather—some of the very conditions we can expect to become common as the climate warms. In my last post, I argued that the solution to this problem favored by US policymakers—to keep industrial agriculture humming along with novel seeds engineered for “drought tolerance”—probably won’t work.
What might? I think the answer lies outside of some Monsanto-funded university lab and right…
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