Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Report details climate change concerns facing rural communities; looks for ways to identify solutions

The Rural Climate Network has released a report, "Rural Climate Policy Priorities: Solutions from the Ground," that includes 10 recommendations specific to climate change in rural areas, Brandon Campbell reports for Public News Service. The report, which focuses on agriculture, conservation, education, energy, fisheries, forestry, health, infrastructure and recreation and tourism, includes "suggestions such as how to keep the U.S. agriculture industry resilient to extreme weather conditions and how federal agencies can do more to help conserve local ecosystems."

Tara Ritter, climate and rural communities program associate with the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), told Campbell, "Rural areas have different concerns. They generally have longer travel distances between destinations, different energy use, different building stock, different industries that their economies are based upon. We weren't seeing those concerns reflected in climate policy."

Ritter said "one of the key ways the U.S. can help rural communities do that is by incentivizing clean energy infrastructure projects or making renewable energy production a priority," Campbell writes. She told him, "There are already so many incentives for fossil fuels that in order to level the playing field, we need to see some clean energy incentives to get that industry up and running and going even stronger than it already is." (Read more)

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