EDMONTON, April 21, 2017 /CNW/ - Farmers know the importance of keeping the land, water and air healthy to sustain their farms and livelihoods from one generation of farm family to the next. Sustainable farming practices will allow them to further grow their operations, while protecting the environment.
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lawrence MacAulay, alongside the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and Member of Parliament for Edmonton Mill Woods, the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, and Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre, Randy Boissonnault, today announced 20 new research projects across Canada that will help the farming sector become a world leader in the development and use of clean and sustainable agricultural technologies and practices.
The new research projects are supported by the $27 million, five-year (2016-2021) Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program (AGGP) intended to help create technologies, practices and processes to help the agricultural sector adjust to climate change and improve soil and water conservation by developing new farming practices and methods.
Minister MacAulay made the announcement on the eve of Earth day in Edmonton at the University of Alberta, which received an investment of $3.7M for three projects that will explore the environmental footprint of different cereal crops, cattle grazing systems, and shelterbelts.
- The AGGP covers four priority areas of research: livestock systems, cropping systems, agricultural water use efficiency and agro-forestry.
- The AGGP investment will continue to support the work of the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases, which brings together 47 countries to find ways to grow more food without growing greenhouse gas emissions.
"Canadian farmers are great stewards of the land and the environment. These new investments are part of the government's commitment to address climate change and ensuring our farming sector are world leaders in the use and development of clean and sustainable technology and processes."
- Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Lawrence MacAulay
"Canada's farmers are already harnessing innovation to reduce their environmental footprint. These new research projects will provide them with affordable and practical solutions to continue feeding the world sustainably."
- Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna
"The Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program (AGGP) marks a significant investment in the government's strategy against climate change. This new investment with the University of Alberta will help provide Canadian farmers access to the latest technology and expertise to help reduce their carbon footprint."
- Minister of Infrastructure and Communities Amarjeet Sohi
"I'm proud to support this announcement of a new investment with the University of Alberta, as part of the government's commitment to sustainable agriculture. The new research at the University of Alberta will help our farmers to continue to be strong stewards of our land, air and water resources."
- MP Randy Boissonnault (Edmonton Centre)
"By investing in research focused on land, livestock, and crop management, AGGP will help ensure farmers have access to expertise and knowledge that will improve efficiency. This funding will help Canada meet its GHG emissions targets, enhance Canada's agricultural and agri-food sector productivity and support a key job-creating sector of Canada's economy."
- Lorne Babiuk, Vice-president (Research) University of Alberta
- The 20 new research projects span from coast-to-coast, from the University of British Columbia to collaborative research with conservation groups in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. They range in scope from studying GHG emissions from blueberry, potato and forage crops in B.C. to planting willow trees in areas irrigated by rivers in the Atlantic as a means to sequester carbon.
- The $3.7 M investment for three projects with the University of Alberta will go towards finding ways for farmers to reduce their GHG emissions and increase soil carbon sequestration. They include: developing a new grazing system for ranchers; investigating the use of perennial cereals over annual cropping systems; and, evaluating the environmental impact of shelterbelts and hedgerows.
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SOURCE Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
For further information: Guy Gallant, Director of Communications, Office of the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, 613-773-1059; Media Relations, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, 613-773-7972, 1-866-345-7972; Follow us on Twitter: @AAFC_Canada, Like us on Facebook: CanadianAgriculture