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Quiet climate policy in a post-COVID world

This report, from the US think tank The Breakthrough Institute, sets out policy options for the US government to decarbonise the economy despite a polarised political climate, focusing on the energy, transport and agriculture sectors.

Within the agriculture sector, the report suggests:

  • Funding agricultural innovation, including covering the agricultural R&D facility maintenance backlog, providing federal loans guarantees to emerging agricultural industries such as cellular agriculture, and funding mission-driven research projects (such as developing carbon-neutral beef and dairy production systems, developing crops that sequester more soil carbon, reducing nitrogen loss and achieving price parity between conventional meats and plant-based alternatives).
  • Support the US dairy industry - which has “struggled with falling demand” and has additionally been impacted by COVID-19 - by incentivising exports, calibrating production to demand, encouraging the adoption of financially and environmentally beneficial manure management, and support dairy farm diversification (e.g. to producing bees, hemp, wine grapes and nuts), including a buy-back programme for dairy equipment that might otherwise become a stranded asset.
  • Investing in agricultural conservation and efficiency programmes to support practices such as cover cropping, nutrient management systems, pasture restoration projects, and forest stand recovery.

Read the full report, Saying the Quiet Part Out Loud: Quiet Climate Policy in a Post-COVID World, here or here (PDF link). See also the Table explainer How can we reduce food-related greenhouse gas emissions?

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Publication
04 Feb 2021
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Saying the quiet part out loud - report cover
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