Climate Change is a global challenge and impacts Ontario farmers. OFA has been working with the provincial government to recognize Climate Change’s current and pending impact on Ontario farm businesses, the importance of adaptation within the agricultural sector to the impacts of Climate Change and to provide research and investment to help farmers adapt.
As legislations are introduced to address Climate Change, like reducing greenhouse gas emissions and a Cap and Trade program, OFA is calling on the Ontario government to consider ways to reduce the financial burden to Ontario farmers that will result from new rules like a legislated price on greenhouse gas emissions. OFA recognizes the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but a legislated increase to the cost of agriculture and food production to a price-taking, high risk industry is ill-advised.
OFA is committed to working with the government and industry to ensure the new Cap and Trade program recognizes agriculture’s role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and includes a flexible, realistic and simple path to agricultural offset credits from farmers.
OFA acknowledges that Climate Change is happening as global temperatures rise, and is evidenced by more frequent extreme weather events and patterns.
Ontario farmers must take action to address the causes and impacts of Climate Change through mitigation and adaptation.
Mitigation is the reduction of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. Mitigation can be achieved by the direct reduction of Greenhouse Gases or by increasing the content of carbon sinks.
Adaptation is preparation for future Climate Change impacts. Farmers need tools to apply on their own farm operations to reduce the effect of rising global temperature and extreme weather events. This includes best management practices (BMPs) that can address the high degree of variability and unpredictability associated with Climate Change.
OFA believes that policies, programs and research initiatives must be developed with government and society to reduce the causes (mitigation) and to enable farmers to cope with the effects (adaptation) of Climate Change.