The United States is slowly waking up to the realities of a changing climate and what that means for our agricultural system. The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) created the Rural Climate Network (RCN) to promote climate adaptation and mitigation policies across the country, and encourage practices that benefit rural communities.
Over the past year, the RCN has developed a national rural climate policy platform firmly rooted in the experiences of its 40-plus organizational members. Whether it is reinvigorated local food economies, more carbon-friendly farming practices, or renewable energy, the RCN firmly believes that – with the right policies – meaningful change will happen in rural communities. The RCN has rallied rural leaders who participate in local, state and national debates on climate change policy, and will continue to speak up in the coming years.
Funding for rural and climate-related work with farmers is extremely limited. According to IATP, “Farm Aid has been a consistent voice for family farmers and sustainable rural development.”
Both IATP and Farm Aid arose from the family farm crisis, and as IATP says, both “are guided by a shared vision of a more just and sustainable agriculture system. It has been an honor to stand shoulder to shoulder with Farm Aid in the movement to help family farmers thrive.”