Regenerative agriculture a ‘win-win-win’

An op-ed in the May 13 edition of the Los Angeles Times quotes CFAES scientist Rattan Lal on the benefits of regenerative agriculture—practices such as using compost, minimizing tillage, and growing cover crops. Regenerative agriculture is a “win-win-win option” that can make the soil healthier, increase food production, and help fight climate change, he is quoted as saying. But it is “not widely understood” yet by policymakers, the public, and many farmers.

Lal, a recent recipient of the prestigious Japan Prize, is Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources.

Read the op-ed.

Local response to global warming

The Environmental Professionals Network (EPN) presents its next breakfast program, “Climate Action: Our Local Response to a Global Challenge,” from 7:15-9:30 a.m. Jan. 15 in Ohio State’s Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, 2201 Fred Taylor Drive, in Columbus. Registration is free for EPN members and Ohio State students, $10 for nonmembers, and includes breakfast. Find out more and register.

EPN is a statewide professional group coordinated by CFAES’s School of Environment and Natural Resources. Membership is free and is open to anyone studying or working in an environmental field.

How climate change is affecting water

“The quality and quantity of water available for use by people and ecosystems across the country are being affected by climate change, increasing risks and costs to agriculture, energy production, industry, recreation, and the environment.”

So say some of the summary findings of the recently released Fourth National Climate Assessment.

“Rising air and water temperatures and changes in precipitation are intensifying droughts, increasing heavy downpours, reducing snowpack, and causing declines in surface water quality, with varying impacts across regions,” the findings also say.

Read all of the report’s summary findings on water. Check out the report’s complete “Water” chapter.

2016 was the hottest year on record; federal climate change panel gets the ax

The Trump administration is disbanding the federal advisory panel for the National Climate Assessment, according to a story in yesterday’s Washington Post. The 15-person panel helps private- and public-sector officials incorporate the assessment’s findings into long-term planning. The science-based assessment reports on the climate’s status, changes that have been seen and anticipated trends for the future.

A draft report of the next assessment, due for release in 2018, says “evidence for a changing climate abounds, from the top of the atmosphere to the depths of the oceans.”

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported on Aug. 10 that 2016 was Earth’s hottest year on record. (Image: iStock.)

‘Stronger evidence’ for human-caused climate change: Draft report

A draft of a federal report on climate change, which includes new data and observations compiled since the third U.S. National Climate Assessment was published in 2014, says “stronger evidence has emerged for continuing, rapid, human-caused warming of the global atmosphere and ocean.”

The report, which is awaiting final approval, says “it is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”

Scientists from 13 federal agencies prepared the draft, which the New York Times published on Aug. 7.

CFAES scientists Rattan Lal and Brent Sohngen contributed to the 2014 assessment.

Jan. 11 EPN event will feature climatologist Lonnie Thompson

JImage of Lonnie Thompsonan. 11’s Environmental Professionals Network breakfast program has a big title for a big topic — in fact, for four very closely related topics.

It’s called “Global Warming. You and Me. Energy Audits. Money in Your Pocket. Cleaner Air. More Comfortable Home. Help Is Available. Don’t Procrastinate.”

And it features talks by four Ohio experts — led by Lonnie Thompson, Distinguished University Professor in Ohio State’s School of Earth Sciences and senior research scientist with the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center (pictured) — on a theme of climate and energy. Read more …