The Connection Between Climate Change & Regenerative Agriculture
Oil and gas, electricity, and transportation are hardly the only industries to blame for climate change and anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. Indeed, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates that methane emissions from agricultural livestock alone comprises over 14 percent of global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions; some estimates are as high as 20 percent. In the United States, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that agriculture is responsible for approximately 10 percent of emissions, and in Colorado, nine percent. Predictions for future emissions don’t look promising: global agricultural emissions may be as high as 30 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions in just three decades from today.
While the agricultural industry may be one of the biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, it also has an amazing capability that other industries lack: agriculture can be as effective a carbon sink as it is damaging a source of emissions.
Growing food in a way that sequesters carbon goes hand-in-hand with a revolution in our food system. A regenerative and localized food system includes farmers, gardeners, land managers, schools, sustainable foragers, and an informed public of consumers who want to make a difference. Growing more of our food locally and without petro-chemical fertilizers and herbicides is healthier for our bodies, gentler on our planet, and builds a community that’s more resilient to climate and fossil fuel price shocks without relying on a fossil-fueled food system.
By cultivating the land with sustainable practices and following in the footsteps of traditional Indigenous farmers and methods, we can simultaneously capture carbon, improve human and animal health and well-being, address food accessibility, and create a more just and equitable food system. Navigate to our education and resource page below to learn much more about regenerative agriculture and local food systems.
Let’s localize our food system together.
350 Colorado has its own Regenerative Agriculture and Local Food Systems Committee to address these very issues in Colorado. Our committee’s mission is to cultivate a new focus in Colorado where regenerative agriculture is a primary and lasting community goal, as well as a model for other places. Through action-oriented tactics — like advocating for regenerative agriculture policies and projects, education and awareness, and partnering with other local organizations and coalitions — our team is dedicated to creating equitable change in Colorado’s agricultural system for a more resilient climate and community. We are a group with diverse interests and backgrounds, and everyone is welcome to join the action and discussion.
Our committee also hosts monthly webinars to educate about regenerative agriculture and change the culture around our food system. Find the upcoming webinar on our Facebook page, or watch any of our past recorded webinars here.