The federal government is releasing more details about the offices it will open in Iowa and a half dozen other states to study climate change. The seven U.S.D.A. facilities, including one in Ames, will be called climate change mitigation centers, or climate hubs.
U.S. Ag Secretary and former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack says the facilities are being placed in separate areas of the country. “These climate change hubs will essentially analyze the risk of each region for and from the changing climate, will obtain input from experts and from producers in each region,” Vilsack says. “They will assess the vulnerability of each region and then identify strategies for dealing with a changing climate.”
Vilsack says the research will be used to guide farmers, ranchers and the owners of forestland on how to best cope with the problems Mother Nature is tossing our way, studying everything from flooding to droughts to insect invasions. “We are convinced that with additional research and now with the passage of the Farm Bill, we should have the resources to continue the research, to continue the analysis, to continue developing strategies and then using our extension service to make sure that practical guidance, which is science-based, is available to producers and to forest owners throughout the United States.”
Vilsack says each hub will use current people on staff, facilities already established and current budgets to maintain the hubs. Other climate hubs will be located in North Carolina, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Oregon, Oklahoma and Colorado.