Climate change warriors must recruit farmers and the faithful

Phil Dolby, flickr

We are never going to get to a majority in the Senate on climate legislation until the farming and faith-based communities have a more serious and urgent conversation about climate with their elected officials.

So it is interesting to see these two reports come out on the same day.

A farming story from The Washington Post is a mixed bag for farmers, but trouble for the rest of us:  lower crop yields and thus higher prices – which is bad for consumers but not necessarily for farmers as a whole.

The story discusses a new study published in the journal science that reports that the warming of the Earth has decreased yields of corn and wheat in much of the world.

“This is tens of billions of dollars a year in lost [agricultural] productivity because of warming,” the Post quotes David Lobell, an Earth scientist at Stanford University and an author on the report.

Another story from E&E Publishing and published in The New York Times Climate Wire reports how the Vatican is helping to strengthen the connection between global warming and vulnerable communities.

That story reports on a new climate report created at the behest of the  Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Vatican's non-denominational scientific arm. The report warns of shrinking glaciers and new risks for humans and ecosystems as a result of climate change.

It is an encouraging follow up to Pope Benedict XVI’s call for urgent action on climate change.

What we urgently need is for these two important communities –farmers and the faithful—to put their strength behind confronting global warming now.  If these two communities joined the ranks, we would have a real shot at overcoming the deeply entrenched fossil fuels lobby determined to prevent the transition to the new energy economy.