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Climate Change & Conservation eNews

Economy

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iStock

Americans beginning to correlate extreme weather with a climate crisis, but purse strings are still tight

A recent poll found that 70% of Americans see climate change as a crisis or major problem. And while 78% of Americans reported being personally affected by extreme weather, only 39% are willing to take on costs to prevent it. Understanding what people care about and how they can see value in those changes will be important. Many are feeling the stress of inflation and uncertainty.

Broader socioeconomic factors are also affecting those who are experiencing weather events, and more importantly, how these parties can financially respond to these events — and thus how willing they are to pay even more.

For instance, only 29% of households that experienced extreme events had 100% of their damages covered by insurance. Renters though had it worse — with those who have experienced extreme events being uninsured 70% of the time…

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Farmerica
Don Graham, Flickr/Creative Commons

USDA to invest $1 billion in climate smart commodities, expanding markets, strengthening rural America

The USDA will invest $1 billion in climate-smart commodities, expanding markets, and strengthening rural America.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today at Lincoln University that the U.S. Department of Agriculture is delivering on its promise to expand markets by investing $1 billion in partnerships to support America’s climate-smart farmers, ranchers and forest landowners. The new Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities opportunity will finance pilot projects that create market opportunities for U.S. agricultural and forestry products that use climate-smart practices and include innovative, cost-effective ways to measure and verify greenhouse gas benefits. USDA is now accepting project applications for fiscal year 2022.

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Cash For Farmers
Shutterstock/Andrii Yalanskyi

U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit: funding opportunities

Here's a list of Funding Opportunities from the U.S. Climate Resilience Tool Kit. And agriculture — as one of the highest stressed industries by climate change — is also leaning in. The USDA will invest $1 billion in climate-smart commodities, expanding markets, and strengthening rural America

Many of the strategies for increasing climate resilience come with a price tag. Increasingly, funding for local climate adaptation and resilience projects must draw on a range of public and private financing. For instance, groups may apply for federal grant funding, work through public/private partnerships, and/or fund projects through local taxes.

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Mn Ag
Land Stewardship Project

MN 2022 supplemental budget: Climate adaptation and mitigation

With the growing urgency to transition off fossil fuels — and finding ways for renewables to work with lands and waters, while accelerating land protection, restoration, and natural climate solutions — funding is increasing in various ways. Check out Minnesota.

Governor Walz and Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan’s Budget to Move Minnesota Forward includes $81.5 million in investments for DNR-managed public lands, facilities and infrastructure to reduce carbon in the atmosphere and adapt to current and future climate change impacts.

You can read more on the climate adaptation and mitigation investments here…

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Illinois Climate Jobs
Climate Jobs Illinois

Illinois EPA: Climate and Equitable Jobs Act

With the growing urgency to transition off fossil fuels — and finding ways for renewables to work with lands and waters, while accelerating land protection, restoration, and natural climate solutions — funding is increasing in various ways. Check out Illinois.

The Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA),  Public Act 102-0662, was passed by the General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Pritzker on September 15, 2021. CEJA includes provisions to phase out carbon emissions from the energy and transportation sectors. The Illinois EPA is directed in CEJA to establish rebate and grant programs for electric vehicles and charging stations and oversee the phase-out of fossil fuel-fired electrical generation units.

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Ny Climate Vibes
ERIK MCGREGOR/LIGHTROCKET VIA GETTY IMAGES

NYS Senate passes $4.2B budget measure to fund environmental infrastructure

With the growing urgency to transition off fossil fuels — and finding ways for renewables to work with lands and waters, while accelerating land protection, restoration, and natural climate solutions — funding is increasing in various ways. Check out New York State.

While the climate change clock rapidly counts down to the point of no return, a record investment in the environment, renewable energy and climate adaptations is on the table in the $220 billion New York state budget for 2022-2023.

A key component to the state’s strategy for turning the tide of global warming is the creation of the Environmental Bond Act. This bill would authorize an amount not to exceed $4.2 billion in state debt to “restore mother nature.” It would focus on funding capital projects to preserve natural resources and reduce the impacts of climate change. Because the measure will create a state debt, voters will have the opportunity to approve the act in November’s election. If approved, the state will issue and sell bonds for the full amount of this cost starting immediately.

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Nj Vibes
NJ DEP

New Jersey: Natural climate solutions

With the growing urgency to transition off fossil fuels — and finding ways for renewables to work with lands and waters, while accelerating land protection, restoration, and natural climate solutions — funding is increasing in various ways. Check it out in New Jersey.

The Natural Climate Solutions Grant program will fund on-the-ground implementation of projects that create, restore, and enhance New Jersey’s natural carbon sinks, such as salt marshes, seagrass beds, forests, urban parks and woodlands, and street trees. Natural resources that sequester carbon play a critical role in meeting the State’s 2050 goal of an 80% reduction in greenhouse gases below 2006 levels. Recognizing this, the Department is announcing the availability of up to $15 million dollars for blue and green carbon projects. This funding is made available due to New Jersey’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), which provides the State with auction proceeds to invest in programs and projects designed to help meet its climate, clean energy, and equity goals.

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midewin national tallgrass prairie
Wikimedia

Linking prairie carbon sequestration and other co-benefits to the voluntary carbon market

The more we understand the importance of prairies, the more our perspective can shift. It's important to remember the role prairies naturally play in trapping soil carbon. Garcia's thesis dives deep into this topic.

A research study at Midewin concluded that prairie restoration led to increased carbon stocks in degraded soils. At Midewin, new restorations contained about 1.5x more carbon than no-till row crops and remnant prairie soils contained about 3 to 4x the carbon stocks than no-till row crops. To supplement the research a literature review was conducted and based on 29 studies, perennial grasslands sequestered on averaged 1.7 metric tons of CO2 per acre per year…

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Farm
Judy Anderson

SunCommon financing program helps Vermont organic farmers go solar

Organic Valley, the largest farmer-owned organic cooperative in the U.S., is teaming up with SunCommon to help Vermont farmers go solar — with zero up-front costs.

SunCommon, headquartered in Waterbury, Vermont, launched a program that offers to help Organic Valley farmers go solar with zero upfront costs. Organic Valley is the largest farmer-owned organic cooperative in the US with a footprint of 100+ Vermont farms. The program provides Organic Valley farmer-members with financing for solar and other renewable energy projects. Farmers benefit from a fully-funded solar installation with no upfront costs, and they save on their energy bill…

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Solar 2
RMI

The future of landfills is bright

Are you promoting the use of landfills for solar development? The more we can use landfills (assuming they haven't become important habitat lands), the more it takes pressure off other lands.

“There are more than 10,000 closed and inactive landfills around the country. These sites offer an incredible opportunity for solar development. By installing solar on closed landfills, states and municipalities advance local solar energy while repurposing relatively large, vacant sites within communities that have limited reuse potential.”

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