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ARS Home » Plains Area » El Reno, Oklahoma » Grazinglands Research Laboratory » Forage and Livestock Production Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #346067

Research Project: Integrated Forage Systems for Food and Energy Production in the Southern Great Plains

Location: Forage and Livestock Production Research

Title: Chapter 10: Agriculture and rural communities

Author
item Gowda, Prasanna
item Steiner, Jean
item Grusak, Michael
item Boggess, Mark
item FARRIGAN, TRACEY - Economic Research Serivce (ERS, USDA)

Submitted to: USDA Miscellaneous Publication 1343
Publication Type: Government Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/13/2018
Publication Date: 11/28/2018
Citation: Gowda, P.H., Steiner, J.L., Grusak, M.A., Boggess, M.V., Farrigan, T. 2018. Chapter 10: Agriculture and rural communities. In: Impacts, Risks, and Adaptation in the United States: Fourth National Climate Assessment, Volume II [Reidmiller, D.R., C.W. Avery, D.R. Easterling, K.E. Kunkel, K.L.M. Lewis, T.K. Maycock, and B.C. Stewart (eds.)]. U.S. Global Change Research Program, Washington, DC, USA, pp 391-437. https://doi.org/10.7930/NCA4.2018.CH10.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.7930/NCA4.2018.CH10

Interpretive Summary: U.S. farmers and ranchers are among the most productive in the world. The agricultural sector makes an important contribution to the U.S. economy, from promoting food and energy security to providing jobs in rural communities across the country. However, many regions in the United States are experiencing declines in crop and livestock production due to climate change induced stressors. The Chapter 10: Agriculture and Rural Communities is one of the 29 chapters in the Fourth National Climate Change Assessment Report by the U.S. Global Change Research Program established by Presidential Initiative in 1989 and mandated by Congress in the Global Change Research Act of 1990. This report assess the climate change impacts on all sectors of U.S. economy. The Chapter 10 presents the assessment of climate change impacts on agriculture and rural communities in the United States and discusses currently available adaptation strategies. This is done by integrating scientific literature from multiple sources to highlight key findings and significant gaps in knowledge. This chapter is arranged under four key messages, one each on impacts of drought, high temperatures, and flooding on crop and livestock production and environmental health and one on climate change impacts on rural communities. Key findings include (1) Reduced crop yields and quality, increased diseases and infestations, intensifying wildfire on rangelands, depletion of surface water supplies, and acceleration of aquifer depletion are anticipated with increased frequency and duration of drought; (2) Challenges to human health, crop productivity, and livestock health are increasing due to increased frequency and intensity of temperature extremes; (3) Soil erosion, nutrient and chemical transport to water bodies, and flooding of communities, cropland, and pastureland will result from extreme rainfall events; and (4) Residents in rural communities often have limited capacity to respond to climate change due to poverty, limited infrastructure, lack of access to resources, and limited health care services.

Technical Abstract: U.S. farmers and ranchers are among the most productive in the world. The agricultural sector makes an important contribution to the U.S. economy, from promoting food and energy security to providing jobs in rural communities across the country. However, many regions in the United States are experiencing declines in crop and livestock production due to climate change induced stressors. The Chapter 10: Agriculture and Rural Communities is one of the 29 chapters in the Fourth National Climate Change Assessment Report by the U.S. Global Change Research Program established by Presidential Initiative in 1989 and mandated by Congress in the Global Change Research Act of 1990. This report assess the climate change impacts on all sectors of U.S. economy. The Chapter 10 presents the assessment of climate change impacts on agriculture and rural communities in the United States and discusses currently available adaptation strategies. This is done by integrating scientific literature from multiple sources to highlight key findings and significant gaps in knowledge. This chapter is arranged under four key messages, one each on impacts of drought, high temperatures, and flooding on crop and livestock production and environmental health and one on climate change impacts on rural communities. Key findings include (1) Reduced crop yields and quality, increased diseases and infestations, intensifying wildfire on rangelands, depletion of surface water supplies, and acceleration of aquifer depletion are anticipated with increased frequency and duration of drought; (2) Challenges to human health, crop productivity, and livestock health are increasing due to increased frequency and intensity of temperature extremes; (3) Soil erosion, nutrient and chemical transport to water bodies, and flooding of communities, cropland, and pastureland will result from extreme rainfall events; and (4) Residents in rural communities often have limited capacity to respond to climate change due to poverty, limited infrastructure, lack of access to resources, and limited health care services.