According to the Biden administration, American agriculture faces unique national security threats, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, increased ransomware attacks, climate change, and the Avian influenza outbreak.
This comes at a time when the White House is adamant about its plans for “climate-smart commodities and rural projects,” through which it is investing $2.8 billion in 70 selected initiatives around the country.
The Biden administration’s climate-related agriculture programs aim to reduce emissions from the U.S. farm sector, which create more than 10% of the total greenhouse gas emissions.
In practice, these “climate-smart” projects attempt to regreen for the purpose of increasing biodiversity and also producing food commodities in a more sustainable way.
It focuses, for instance, on crop cover and reducing tillage, as well as carbon capture and swapping out the use of wet cow manure — the creation of which accounts for a large amount of a farm’s greenhouse gas emissions — for dry manure like composting.
The administration’s move echoes the investments made in Europe into sustainable farming, with a substantial difference that speaks in its favor: contrary to the European approach of reducing farmland, and even subsidizing farmers to give up livestock (which has led to major protests in the Netherlands), the “climate-smart” funding opportunities guide farmers to innovative solutions instead of paying them to essentially give up.
In this sense, the Biden administration does not copy-paste the mistakes that the Europeans are committing.
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