The more than 80 member organizations of the Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance strongly commend USDA for advancing a voluntary, incentive-based approach to deploy climate-smart practices on working lands through its Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities.
Members of the Alliance welcome USDA’s plan to partner with farmers, ranchers, forest owners and nongovernmental organizations through pilot projects and are pleased to see the program structured in a manner consistent with FACA recommendations. We share Secretary Vilsack’s optimism that this approach will support climate-smart commodities, while unlocking new market opportunities, and we believe it will build confidence in the climate benefits of advanced farming and forestry practices.
FACA stressed in previous comments submitted to USDA the importance of building flexibility into the initiative to acknowledge that agriculture and forestry look very different in different regions, and we’re pleased USDA’s plan appears to welcome a diversity of practices and approaches. We also asked USDA to include a plan for engaging and enrolling Black, Indigenous, people of color and small farmers, ranchers and forest owners in the project, which the initiative has prioritized.
FACA members look forward to contributing to proposals that meet the requirements of the Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities to demonstrate the impact of voluntary, incentive-based programs. We will continue to engage with the administration and Congress to advance bipartisan solutions to address climate challenges that abide by the alliance’s principles and recommendations.