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University of California
Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County

Posts Tagged: Agriculture

Sustainability - what does it really mean?

What is sustainable agriculture?
Sustainability has become a buzzword. Everywhere you look it's sustainable this, sustainable that. But what does it really mean? What makes something truly sustainable? And what does it mean in terms of food production?

April's Global Food Systems Forum invigorated the conversation. The event convened some of agriculture's leading experts to address the plethora of challenges that face our global food systems. The conversation brought forward several hot topics: GMOs, large scale vs. small scale production, nutrition and more.

But even with the riveting debate, the question remains: What is sustainability? Is it focusing more on natural ecosystems? Is it being completely self-reliant, or turning only to organics? Is it focusing on a larger multi-national scale?

UC ANR has started holding a series of sustainability webinars to continue the conversation and tackle some of these questions. The first webinar took place on Feb. 15, 2013 with Tom Tomich, director of the UC Agricultural Sustainability Institute. The webinar tackled the issue of sustainability: What is it? Is there a sustainability science? What is at stake? The video can be seen on the ASI website.

The second webinar, on May 31, 2013 with Neil McRoberts, professor in the Department of Plant Pathology at UC Davis, focused on linking sustainability theory with practice. McRoberts addressed sustainability theory using formal models to plan and track extension outreach efforts, and linking interdisciplinary scientists. Though the webinar is not yet available online, it will be soon on the ASI website.

The next webinar is Thursday, June 13, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Featuring Ermias Kebreab, professor in the Department of Animal Science at UC Davis, the webinar centers on environmental sustainability of animal agriculture. Topics will include: sustainability as a "wicked" problem, water quality and livestock production, and the mitigation of air emissions from livestock operations. The webinar is free and open to the public. More information is available on the Agricultural Sustainability Institute website.

Sustainability is a complex issue. These questions about the definition and concept are not going to be answered overnight. But as long as these types of conversations and learning opportunities continue to take place, I'm confident we'll continue adapting and meeting the complex challenges with which we are faced.

Posted on Wednesday, June 5, 2013 at 8:48 AM
  • Author: Marissa Palin
Tags: agriculture (3), ASI (1), food system (1), sustainability (1), webinar (1)

Feeding billions in the face of climate change

As drought dries the landscape and rising global temperatures make for decreasing crop yields, farmers are faced with the question of how to feed billions of people in a way that both reduces global greenhouse gas emissions and adapts to the realities of climate change.

Scientists and policymakers from around the world will gather today through Friday, March 20-22, at the University of California, Davis, to grapple with the threats of climate change for global agriculture and recommend science-based actions to slow its effects while meeting the world's need for food, livelihood and sustainability.

The Climate-Smart Agriculture Global Science Conference, planned in coordination with the World Bank, builds on a 2011 international meeting on this theme in the Netherlands.

"Climate change, which brings severe weather events and more subtle but equally menacing temperature changes, presents unprecedented challenges to the global community," said UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi.

"In California, where we rely heavily on snowmelt for irrigation to grow half of our nation's fruit and vegetables, we are acutely aware that scientists and policymakers must join forces to lessen the potential effects of climate change," she said.

Katehi will open the conference on Wednesday, March 20, along with Thomas Vilsack, secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (via video). The public is invited to attend the opening day’s program (8:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m), free of charge; and the closing day’s afternoon program (noon-3:45 p.m.), also  free of charge. These will be held in Jackson Hall of the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. (Lunches not included.)

Catherine Woteki, USDA undersecretary, will speak Thursday evening, March 21.

Other speakers will include: Ben Santer, climate researcher at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and a member of the National Academy of Sciences; Joseph Alcamo, chief scientist for the United Nations Environmental Program; and Patrick Caron, general director for research and strategy of the French Agricultural Research Center for International Development. Also speaking will be outstanding scientists from dozens of universities and research institutes from around the world.

Conference topics will focus on the implications of cutting-edge agricultural, ecological and environmental research for improved design of policies and actions affecting agricultural management and development; identifying farm and food-system issues, determining research gaps; highlighting emerging research initiatives; and developing transformative policies and institutions.

The conference will conclude with participants developing and endorsing a declaration regarding the key research and policy messages that result from conference presentations and discussions. This declaration is expected to point toward science-based policies and actions for global agriculture that will mitigate climate change and encourage adaptation to maintain food security, livelihoods and biodiversity.

 

Posted on Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at 6:45 AM

Webinar: Hearing Loss Prevention in Agriculture

Presenters will include Janet Ehlers, RN, MSN, Occupational Health Nurse and Pamela Graydon, MS, COHC, Electronics Engineer.

Who should participate? Anyone who works with people exposed to noise in farming. This train-the-trainer online workshop will include how to select and insert hearing protection properly. In order to practice what is being demonstrated, please bring at least one kind of formable (foam) earplugs to the workshop.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011                                    3:00 pm to 4:15 pm Eastern DST

1. To connect to telephone conference:

Toll free (877)784-2189

Participant code 7518864

2. To connect to internet session:

Meeting ID: 33RZ9H  

Entry Code: pmwdkh

A limited number of phone lines are available, make arrangements earlier.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011                                 9:00 am-10:15 am Eastern DST

1. To connect to telephone conference:

Toll free (877) 784-2189

Participant code 7518864

2. To connect to internet session:

Meeting ID: N84CTW

Entry Code: kmirew

 

Pre-registration is not necessary. However, a limited number of phone lines are available.  To help assure that you and your staff can participate, call and log in early. If all phone lines are taken, please see information on the next page to obtain additional dates of times when this workshop is offered.

Instructions for joining the online workshop
To participate in this online workshop, both a computer with an internet connection and a telephone line are necessary. The presenters will be using a system named Microsoft Office Live Meeting to show the slides and visual aids. To listen and interact with the presenters, the user will need to connect to a telephone conference call.  The instructions for both are explained below.

Caution first time users:  To save time before the online workshop, check your system to make sure it is ready to use Microsoft Office Live Meeting.


To access the online workshop:  

1. Go to: https://www.livemeeting.com/cc/cdc/join

2. Copy and paste the required information from the above tables for the meeting that you will be participating.

Notice: Microsoft Office Live Meeting can be used to record meetings. By participating in this meeting, you agree that your communications may be monitored or recorded at any time during the meeting.


 

For additional information on this workshop, presentation handouts, other possible dates for this same workshop, or to order the free brochures contact:

Janet Ehlers at: jehlers@cdc.gov           Jose Lainez at: jlainez@cdc.gov


 

Free brochures are available in single copies or bulk orders for your organization
They can also be viewed or printed electronically via www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/noise

They’re your ears – Protect them (#2007-175) primarily describes the problem, e.g. the relationship between noise exposure and hearing loss, and provides information to overcome resistance to hearing protection device usage.   They're your ears is also available electronically in Spanish.

Have you Heard? Hearing Loss Caused by Farm Noise is Preventable (#2007-176) primarily describes appropriate selection and use of hearing protective devices, e.g. ear plugs.

 

HearingProtectionRequired
HearingProtectionRequired

Posted on Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 4:06 PM
Tags: Agriculture (3), hearing loss (1)
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