IPM is good but gets a bad rap

I love it when another writer does my job for me–defining integrated pest management in the broad scheme of agriculture and analyzing why the general public still has trouble with the concept. In her essay in The New Food Economy, writer Sophia Mendelson discusses what IPM is, suggests that it should be called integrated crop management and muses about why the general public suddenly jumped on the organic bandwagon in 1990.

Read the article.

Corn growers and environmental advocate find ways to work together

In Delta Farm Press

The idea that the National Corn Growers Association would fall in line with the Environmental Defense Fund views seems far-fetched. However, when it comes to soil health, Chris Novak says the two organizations have a common purpose.

Novak, CEO of the National Corn Growers Association, says the time has come for farmers and ranchers to have open dialogues with environmental advocates regarding climate change, soil health and sustainability. “We can fight things out in the courts, we can fight things out in Congress — or we can buckle down, sit down at the table together and talk together about the opportunity for voluntary solution, and we can make real progress for our land and farms at the same time,” he says. Continue reading

Webinar: The Extension Sustainability Database: Connect with Your Colleagues on a National Level

This webinar is scheduled for Aug 3, 2017 3:00 pm US/Eastern.

The Climate Learning Network and the ANREP Climate Science Initiative are hosting this webinar on a new national database of sustainability-focused Extension programs. Dr. Roslynn Brain-McCannon will go through the use and potential applications of this 170+ entry databases that includes Extension programs from 41 states. Continue reading

Northern Va. Students Honored with President’s Environmental Youth Award for Healthy and Sustainable Farming Practices

Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that the George Mason High School Environmental Group, a group of 11 students in Falls Church, Va. will receive the 2016 President’s Environmental Youth Award for grade levels 6-12 for their work with healthy and sustainable farming practices. The national award is presented each year to exceptional students who demonstrate creativity, innovation, and leadership to address difficult environmental challenges.

“Today, we are pleased to honor these impressive young leaders, who demonstrate the impact that a few individuals can make to protect our environment,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “These students are empowering their peers, educating their communities, and demonstrating the STEM skills needed for this country to thrive in the global economy.” Continue reading

Spotted Wing Drosophila Webinar Scheduled for January 25th – Register Now!

by Hannah Burrack, NC State University

Spotted wing drosophila on strawberry

SWD on strawberry. Photo by Bev Gerdeman, Washington State University

Members of the Sustainable SWD Project will present a webinar online on January 25th at 12-1pm eastern time, highlighting information about control of the invasive insect pest, spotted wing Drosophila. The webinar titled “Making the Most of Your Insecticide Toolbox to Manage SWD” will cover research conducted during the first year of this project, and will provide recommendations for growers to prepare for the 2017 growing season. In this webinar, presenters from North Carolina State University, Michigan State University, and the University of Georgia will report on their research on insecticidal control of spotted wing drosophila. Continue reading

U.S. EPA: Tribal Science Webinar Series

The U.S. EPA Office of Research and Development, National Center for Environmental Research is pleased to invite you to attend…

U.S. EPA: Tribal Science Webinar Series

Tuesday July 26, 2016

3 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. EDT Continue reading

Cover Crops Can Help Control Pests by Fostering Natural Enemies

by Candace Pollock, Southern SARE

Cover crops used as refuge crops in vegetable production can control insect pests by fostering populations of natural enemies and competitor non-virus vectoring species, based on the results of USDA-ARS research.

Research entomologists Stephen Hight with the USDA-ARS Insect Behavior and Biocontrol Research Unit in Florida, and Stuart Reitz with Oregon State University, led a Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education-funded project from 2012 to 2014 to study whether bidens and blue lupine can control Western flower thrips and tobacco thrips in tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers. The study explored more sustainable methods of pest management than insecticide use. Continue reading

Sustainable Agriculture Analyst, Sustainable Food Group

Full-time analyst position available with an independent non-profit organization working to improve sustainability in agriculture and communities through Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and other best practices and performance metrics. Responsibilities include contributing to quality assurance efforts for sustainability programs for farmers, food companies and supply chains.

The individual in this position will work with the project team, scientists, farmers, packer/shippers and processors on verification of information provided by program participants including quality assurance of desk and site audits and other verification responsibilities. The individual will also support standards research, development and implementation, and contribute content expertise to other projects. Continue reading

Danesha Seth Carley receives sustainability award from NC State University

Danesha Seth Carley is one of the 2015 recipients of the Green Brick Award, an award given for outstanding achievement in environmental sustainability on campus, in the community or globally. The Campus Environmental Sustainability Team sponsors the award. Awards are given to students, faculty, teams and staff members and presented with a recycled glass plaque.

Carley was nominated as the faculty member who best represents sustainability at NC State University. Click here for more information about the Green Brick Award.

Study shows cattle don’t damage soil by grazing cover crops

In Southeast Farm Press

A U.S. Department of Agriculture scientist in North Carolina has found a way to encourage more growers to use cover crops in the Southeastern United States—allow cattle to graze on them.

Cover crops reduce soil erosion, boost organic matter, keep more moisture in soil and sequester carbon in the soil so less of it is released as a greenhouse gas.

Continue reading