Researcher: Future of Food Depends on Climate Resilience
Thursday, January 9, 2020
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Without a sustained cold snap yet this winter, Ohio again is experiencing an unseasonable season.
And an agricultural researcher says these unconventional weather patterns and other impacts of climate change are threatening the future of the food system.
Soil scientist and educator Laura Lengnick, founder and principal consultant for Cultivating Resilience, explains that growers have experienced reduced yields in recent years because of heavy, flooding rains followed by increased dry spells. She says there are other, more subtle, effects on food production.
"Winters are warming, fruit trees are blooming earlier and then we're losing crops because we have a late freeze that kills the blossoms," she points out.
Lengnick says the good news is the growing interest in sustainable farming practices that can slow down climate change by trapping carbon.
"Midwest farmers are leading this change, actually, in agriculture, and that is really focusing in on building soil health," she states. "For example, no till, cover crops and more diversified cropping systems."
Lengnick will dive deeper into the agricultural solutions to climate change during her keynote address, "Climate Change, Resilience, and the Future of Food," at the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association's annual conference on Feb. 14.
Lengnick notes that resilience is not just about bouncing back from climate impacts, but also reducing future risks.
"There's a lot we can learn from resilience thinking about how to change the way that we've organized our food system, so that when these disturbances happen, there's less damage or maybe even no damage so we never need to bounce back," she states.
Lengnick says our food choices also play a role in slowing down and reversing climate change.
"I urge consumers to look for and support products, farmers and products that are using these kinds of sustainable agriculture tools," she stresses. "It's a big shift and it's a way that we all can support a more resilient agriculture and food system."
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
BALTIMORE -- Spurred on by COVID challenges, a grant from the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council to two human services providers is …
RUBY MOUNTAINS, Nev. -- Nevada is the driest state in the nation, yet few of its rivers and streams have federal protections. Now a new report …
ROCK SPRINGS, Wyo. -- This weekend, athletes from across the nation gathered in South Pass City to Run the Red, a series of marathons through the Red …
ST. PAUL, Minn. - The challenges facing older Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Minnesotans will be the focal point of a virtual forum tomorrow…
Health and Wellness
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. - Missourians have a little more than a month until open enrollment for health-care coverage at healthcare.gov, and medical experts …
TOLEDO, Ohio -- As the Biden administration engages in talks with the European Union about dropping tariffs on its steel exports, many U.S.-based …
LINCOLN, Neb. - A coalition of Nebraska community organizations and supporters are collecting signatures for a ballot initiative that would raise the …
MADISON, Wis. - Prescription drug costs are climbing faster than wages for the average Wisconsin resident. That's according to a new analysis…