Climate Farmers

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= romoting farming practices that conserve resources, reduce emissions and improve the land through less intensive chemical use.


URL = http://www.najk.nl/ondernemende-jongeren/projecten-en-activiteiten/projecten/climate-farmers/

Description

'The Climate Farmers campaigners are promoting farming practices that conserve resources, reduce emissions and improve the land through less intensive chemical use. They also seek to influence the future of European Union’s farm support programme, the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

Policy debates and research into what can be done to reduce the environmental footprint of food production often do not translate into useable information for farmers, said Sander Kerkhoffs, one of the leaders of the Climate Farmers project.

“A lot of research is done by universities and other institutions, but a lot of those results from the research don’t fit to the practical circumstances at the farm level,” Kerkhoffs said.

“So we wanted to look at practical measures which are already implemented on some farms which have proven their effect in lowering emissions, for example, or can be further introduced to colleague farmers.”

Climate Farmers has produced information on sustainable farming methods in Ireland, Spain, the Netherlands and Sweden and wants to share their recommendations across Europe. A website supported by the European Council of Young Farmers and the Dutch Young Farmers Organisation was launched at the end of 2011.

The campaigners use case studies to show that farmers can play a role in trimming carbon emissions, cutting pesticide and fertiliser use, and reducing their water footprint while improving crop output and animal husbandry.

The methods are as basic as reducing ploughing, mixing cover crops to raise organic matter in soil, and letting animals graze more to cut the reduce the need for imported feeds. At one farm, manure is being used to create biogas to run tractors and generate electricity while reducing methane pollution that is a byproduct of animal waste." (http://www.euractiv.com/cap/climate-farmers-highlight-green-agriculture-practices-news-510039)