Climate Change

Climate change is one of three focus areas that will frame our policy, education, networking and collaboration activities in 2022, offering multiple points of intersection for funders across our network.

The Issue

According to the Fourth National Climate Assessment, a federal inter-agency report published by the U.S. Global Change Research Program in 2018: 

Rising temperatures, extreme heat, drought, wildfire on rangelands, and heavy downpours are expected to increasingly disrupt agricultural productivity in the United States. Expected increases in challenges to livestock health, declines in crop yields and quality, and changes in extreme events in the United States and abroad threaten rural livelihoods, sustainable food security, and price stability.

The report also notes that livelihoods of rural communities and Indigenous and Tribal communities face unique and heightened risks from the effects of climate change. 

The report’s predictions refer primarily to commodity crop and industrial livestock production. It does note that Indigenous knowledge offers important insights and interventions that can inform climate resiliency plans.


Opportunities for Philanthropy

Community-level interventions

Funders can support soil health and regeneration programs, diversified agroecological practices, and livestock grazing at non-industrial scales. These programs help create farms that are more resilient in the face of extreme weather events, and that contribute to the climate change solution by sequestering carbon and lowering methane and other harmful emissions.

Systems-level interventions

Nonprofits advocating for the policy changes that can enable more climate-friendly and climate-resilient farming need philanthropic support for their research, position development and advocacy efforts. Funders themselves can advocate for increases in public investment in research and incentives for the adoption of conservation, soil health, pastured livestock, and other practices that mitigate agricultural impacts on climate change. Support for movement building and organizing to bring attention and solutions to the disproportionate impact of climate change on rural communities, Indigenous peoples, and communities of color is also critical.


Learn More

Climate Change and Agriculture: A Perfect Storm in Farm Country – Union of Concerned Scientists

Fourth National Climate Assessment – U.S. Global Change Research Program

Global Climate Change Impact on Crops Expected Within 10 Years, NASA Study Finds – NASA

Farming For Our Future: Opportunities Abound – EarthJustice

6 Ways the U.S. Can Curb Climate Change and Grow More Food – World Resources Institute

NGOs/Experts

This list is provided for information only; listing here does not imply an endorsement by SAFSF. Please do your due diligence as you would for any other contribution. Complete this submission form to add an organization that should be included here (self-reporting is encouraged).

National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition

National Young Farmers Coalition

Union of Concerned Scientists