The effects of changing weather and climate present new challenges for farms, forests, and ranches. Regardless of its causes, the impacts of climate change will need to be addressed in order for agriculture and forestry to continue meeting the world’s growing demand for food, feed, fiber, shelter, and fuel. Because of this, the 25x’25 Alliance has formed its Adaptation Work Group composed of agriculture, forestry, business, academic, and conservation leaders. Together, this group is exploring the impacts of a changing climate on the agriculture and forestry sectors and developing recommendations on ways for producers, policymakers, and other stakeholders to adapt.
The 25x’25 National Steering Committee chartered a special Work Group in 2008 to analyze agriculture and forestry’s role in a reduced carbon economy and develop recommendations for how each sector can capitalize on efforts to reduce and capture carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions.
Through this initiative, the 25x’25 Alliance, in collaboration with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, is assisting a group of rural electric utilities in developing and piloting renewable energy for economic growth business and community engagement models. As part of the project, 25x’25 is also helping participating rural electric cooperatives and public power providers in sharing their experiences and outcomes with utilities across the country. The goal of the project is to demonstrate how distributed renewable energy generation can be a new vehicle for powering communities and empowering cooperative members to improve the quality of their members’ lives. To help sustain the tremendous growth of the distributed generation projects undertaken by co-ops, the Alliance’s Energy for Economic Growth (EEG) team focuses on pilot projects that not only produce renewable energy, but also offer important ecosystem service benefits such as carbon sequestration and improvements in soil, water and air quality.
In 2010 and 2011, the 25×25 Alliance and the Federal Interagency Woody Biomass Working Group convened a Wood-to-Energy Workgroup, consisting of representatives from landowner groups, professional forestry organizations, environmental organizations, traditional forest industries, emerging renewable energy industries, and academia. Through a series of forums, they explored four topics vital to the future of biomass energy in America: wood demand and supply, sustainability of forest resources, carbon and climate change, and related policies. The National Wood-to-Energy Roadmap, published June 1, 2011, summarizes the key findings and recommendations for each forum topic.