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Conversation Guide

Regenerative Agriculture in the Face of Climate Change

LaKisha OdomFoundation for Food and Agriculture
Bryan VanStippenNational Indian Carbon Coalition
Chris MehusWestern Sustainability Exchange
Loren Poncia Stemple Creek Ranch 

As co-inhabitants of this earth, we face unparalleled threats to life as we know it due to human-induced changes in our climate. We are witnessing global warming, wild fluctuations in climate including more frequent and unpredictable natural disasters, rising sea levels, species die off and more. 

Societal inequality causes marginalized people to experience the worst byproducts of climate change. Shifts in agriculture, forestry, and conservation practices towards soil health represent opportunities for creating climate resilience for those directly engaged in these activities. They also are an opportunity to be part of climate change mitigation. 

This is a discussion of how we mitigate climate change through agriculture, adapt to changes in the climate, and address the inequities of a current and growing “climate apartheid,” specifically by following the leadership and guidance of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) leaders in the movement for regenerative climate solutions.

Climate Apartheid- a scenario where the wealthy pay for carbon credits or other ways to circumvent climate and carbon regulations and are able to escape overheating, hunger and conflict while those unable to pay are left to suffer.

Carbon Sequestration- the process of capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide to slow or reduce atmospheric CO2 pollution to mitigate climate change.

Carbon Sink- a forest, ocean, or other natural environment viewed in terms of its ability to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

  • What type of carbon market programs have YOU seen to work well…
    -To support farmers and ranchers?
    -To reduce risk/burden for low-income and communities of color?
  • What have you noticed about how climate change affects the land where you stand/live?
  • What types of ways could your local/regional level to support/incentivize/monetize carbon removal?
  • How can we disincentivize systems of “climate apartheid”?
  • Legislative requirements vs. Voluntary entry, does this how affect soil carbon markets will be perceived and used? Share how.
  • How have you leveraged your own resources to specifically uplift and include marginalized voices? How do you heed the call of BIPOC leaders in climate action and regenerative agriculture?



  • How does my work connect with this?
  • How could my work connect more deeply into this space?
  • Are there concepts/ideologies from this plenary that I should shape my work going forward?
  • Conversely, are there concepts/ideologies in the way that I currently work that need to let go of?  What will it take to do so?

Organizations/Projects to Check Out:

East Jemez Landscape Futures

Youth United for Climate Crisis Action (YUCCA) from Earth Care, Santa Fe, NM

Climate Justice Alliance

HEAL Food Alliance

Quivira Coalition’s Carbon Ranch Initiative, which includes links to plenty of additional resources

Regen Network

Marin Carbon Project

Conservation International


Additional reading:


As Long as Grass Grows – Dina Gilio-Whitaker

Emergent Possibilities for Global Sustainability: Intersections of Race, Class, and Gender – Phoebe Godfrey & Denise Torres

All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis Essay Collection Edited by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson & Katharine Keeble Wilkinson

The Carbon Farming Solution: A Global Toolkit of Perennial Crops and Regenerative Agriculture Practices for Climate Change Mitigation and Food Security by Eric Toensmeier

Two Percent Solutions for the Planet: 50 Low-Cost, Low-Tech, Nature-Based Practices for Combating Hunger, Drought, and Climate Change – By Courtney White



American environmentalism’s racist roots have shaped global thinking about conservation

Carbon Sequestration through Agroforestry in Indigenous Communities of Chiapas, Mexico

Requests from the People of Color Caucus at the North American Permaculture

Convergence (p. 3)

Environment and Imperialism : Why Colonialism Still Matters

Carbon Farming

Productively teach and discuss climate change

Climate Change and New Mexico


Other Media/Opportunities:

Soil Health Workbook: Fundamentals, Principles and Management for Producers and Technical Service Providers in the Dryland Intermountain West – downloadable pdf

The New Ranch Handbook: A Guide to Restoring Western Rangelands – downloadable pdf

Soil; The Dirty Climate Solutionpodcast episode on How to Save a Planet Podcast

Dirt! The Movie

Sequestering Carbon in Soil Listserv

Anti-racism in the Environmental Movement – TedX Talk

Understanding Climate Smart Agriculture – Video

Agricultural Education: A Love Story – TedX Talk from Yolanda Owens

Agriculture & the global climate debate – podcast episode from the Food and Agriculture 


Sustainable Agriculture and the Environment Podcast List

Regenerative Agriculture Network Web Forum

Nori Podcasts – Carbon removal and climate change focused


Funding Sources:

Natural Resource Conservation Service grants, USDA

Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education grants

National Grazing Lands Coalition grants

#NoRegrets Initiative

Regenerative Agriculture Foundation

List of sustainable agriculture and food systems funders


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