125 Addressing Issues Related to Animal Agriculture and Climate Change through Extension Programming

Monday, 7 January 2013
Exhibit Hall 3 (Austin Convention Center)
Pamela N. Knox, Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA; and M. Risse, G. Hawkins, E. Whitefield, D. Smith, C. Powers, D. Schmidt, and J. Pronto

Handout (1.2 MB)

Agricultural Extension agents are among the most trusted local sources of new information for farmers and agricultural stakeholders. As such, they play a critical role in educating livestock, poultry and crop producers on climate change and its impacts on their activities. However, they often lack the scientific expertise and educational resources necessary to confidently and effectively communicate climate change issues. In addition, they lack sector-specific knowledge of how changing climate may affect ongoing operations of and future impacts on their user communities. In response, the Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center (LPELC) has produced a number of online educational modules to support Extension agents and other technical service providers. These modules address climate variability and change, adaptation strategies, and greenhouse gas mitigation options for different livestock species and poultry operations. Regional project teams are currently developing an online course that addresses species-specific and regionally focused production practices that are environmentally sound, climatically compatible, and economically viable. By coordinating at the national level, the project team was able to provide a unified message while making optimal use of group resources. A primary desired outcome from this process is that stakeholder decisions will result in reduced greenhouse gas emissions without sacrificing the United States' capacity to produce meat, milk, eggs and other animal products in an economical manner.
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