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USDA FIELD STAFF USE OF CLIMATE AND WEATHER RESOURCES: PERSPECTIVES ON RESPONDING TO CHANGE – Dr. Rachel Schattman
March 2, 2020 @ 12:00 pm
USDA FIELD STAFF USE OF CLIMATE AND WEATHER RESOURCES: PERSPECTIVES ON RESPONDING TO CHANGE
Dr. Rachel Schattman
Assistant Professor of Sustainable Agriculture
University of Maine School of Food and Agriculture
Monday, March 2, 2020, 12pm
307 Bryand Global Science Center
Abstract: Agricultural service providers often work closely with producers, and are well positioned to include weather and climate change information in the services they provide. By doing so, they can help producers reduce risks due to climate variability and change. A national survey of United States Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency (FSA) field staff (n = 4621) was conducted in 2016, accompanied by a similar survey of field staff from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS, n = 1893). The survey was designed to assess FSA and NRCS employees’ use of climate and weather-related data and explore their perspectives on climate change, attitudes toward adaptation and concerns regarding climate- and weather-driven risks. Findings suggest that there are opportunities to increase employee exposure and proficiency with weather and climate information to meet the needs of American farmers by helping them to reduce risk.