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Purdue-led Project Aims to Enhance Climate Resilience in Corn Belt Agriculture
Iowa Ag Connection - 05/23/2023

Purdue University is spearheading a $1.5 million partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Midwest Climate Hub to assist farmers and landowners in Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa in adapting to the impacts of climate change. The Integrated Midwest Partnerships for Actionable Climate Tools and Training (IMPACT2) project, funded by the USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture, aims to help these stakeholders mitigate the adverse effects of climate change through the adoption of climate-smart practices.

Given the projected lower corn yields in a changing climate, IMPACT2 will explore how farmers can diversify their crop production to enhance their resilience. The project is part of a larger initiative called the Diverse Corn Belt Project, which focuses on making Midwest farms more resilient to climate change and other farming challenges.

IMPACT2 aims to reach a wide range of farmers, including conventional row-crop farmers, urban farmers, and small-scale horticultural farmers. By offering scenario-based activities and providing training and support through an online portal, the project seeks to help stakeholders envision and implement sustainable farming practices.

The team, consisting of experts from Purdue University, Iowa State University, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, will address both near-term adaptation and long-term mitigation strategies. The goal is to ensure the agricultural sector's ability to adapt to the changing climate while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

By engaging diverse audiences and incorporating social scientists into the project, IMPACT2 aims to understand the influences and motivations of farmers beyond economic factors. The project intends to provide effective communication strategies that align with farmers' values, social norms, and cultural practices.

IMPACT2 plans to reach at least 2,000 stakeholders through its online platform and provide training to over 500 farmers and landowners. By equipping stakeholders with the necessary tools and knowledge, the project aims to double the impact of climate-smart agriculture in the Corn Belt region.

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