Business & Policy
Government invests $200 million in GHG reduction management practices
By Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
On Aug. 12, Marie-Claude Bibeau, minister of agriculture and agri-food, launched a call for proposals for the On-Farm Climate Action Fund, a new fund under Agricultural Climate Solutions. Starting this year and until 2024, the $200-million fund will provide direct support to farmers to adopt beneficial management practices that store carbon and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in three target areas: cover cropping, nitrogen management, and rotational grazing practices. These three on-farm actions not only reduce GHG emissions but also offer farmers a cost-effective solution to improve soil health and achieve other environmental benefits.
This year has demonstrated the extraordinary challenges farmers face on the front lines of climate change. Extreme weather events, like this year’s drought, and other environmental impacts, like challenges related to water availability and quality, soil health and biodiversity, are projected to become more severe and costly for the sector in the coming decades.
The fund will follow an outcome-based approach in order to maximize new GHG emissions reductions. Activities supported through the fund are expected to reduce GHG emissions by up to 2 million tonnes by 2024, and by 1 million tonnes per year ongoing, compared to current projections, and bring a total of 792,000 hectares of land under improved management practices.
The On-Farm Climate Action Fund is now seeking proposals from potential delivery partners to redistribute the funds to farmers undertaking eligible activities. Potential delivery partners for the fund could include producer groups and associations, commodity organizations, Indigenous groups, non-governmental organizations, and provincial or territorial Crown corporations, among others.
Delivery partners will need to propose a delivery plan that would best achieve the targeted outcomes.
“This season has been devastating for many farmers across Canada, with severe heat, drought and fires; impacts that we know will only become more severe and more frequent because of climate change,” said Karen Ross, director of Farmers for Climate Solutions. “The On-Farm Climate Action Fund empowers us to do something concrete on our farms to adapt to extreme weather and jump-start emission reductions. This new program is a first step in helping farmers meet the immense challenge of climate change.”
Direct support to farmers will fall under these target areas:
- Cover cropping: for example, payment-per-acre to cover adoption or related costs, such as seeds and equipment.
- Nitrogen management: for example, agronomic services to develop farm-specific nutrient management plans, equipment modifications for fertilizer application in fields, and soil sampling and analysis.
- Rotational grazing: for example, agronomic services to develop grazing management plans, interior cross fencing, water system infrastructure, legume and forage seeds. Rotational grazing is the practice of containing and moving livestock through pasture to allow forage plants to recover, deepen their root systems and improve soil health.
To request the call for proposals form, please email email@example.com. The application process will run until Sept. 26.