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Assess and Reduce Agricultural GHG Emissions (Proposed)
The 2015 iCAP, chapter 7, objective 1 is "Perform a comprehensive assessment of GHG emissions from agricultural operations, and develop a plan to reduce them, by the end of FY16." This assessment should include the identification or development of an agricultural emissions calculator that can be used on an annual basis to estimate related GHG emissions, along with the identification of the appropriate group of stakeholders in the relevant units who would annually provide the required input data.
Agricultural practices contribute to GHG emissions in several ways, from production, processing, transportation, marketing, consumption, and waste. A critical first step will be a complete assessment of our baseline agricultural emissions. Campus could commission an Agricultural Emissions Consultation Group of campus experts, including crop scientists, animal scientists, ecologists, students, and others, to perform a comprehensive assessment of the greenhouse gas emissions from South Farms and recommended actions to reduce those emissions. One group of actions may include changes to agricultural practices, such as the use of cover crops or the timing of fertilizer applications. Another category is technological changes, such as the use of renewably produced biodiesel in farm vehicles or the construction of an anaerobic digester to convert agricultural, landscaping, and food waste into energy.