Workshop participants in wheat fieldScience in Action to Improve the Sustainability of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Food Systems

Welcome to CSANR!

Perspectives on Sustainability - CSANR Blog

  • How Will Climate Change Affect the Use of Fallow in Cropping Systems in Our Region?

    June 21, 2018
    Wheat residue on dry field

    Wheat residue on field near Ritzville, Washington, which is part of the a grain-fallow cropping system. (Photo: D. Kilgore)

    In non-irrigated areas that are too dry to support annual cropping, fallow (the practice of leaving land unplanted) preserves soil moisture for future crops. However, annual fallow combined with conventional tillage has resulted in a net decrease in soil carbon over time in our region, with negative impacts to soil health across large areas. And even when tillage is eliminated, it is very difficult to maintain soil carbon over time in a wheat-fallow system.  For this reason, the impact of climate change on the frequency of fallow in crop rotations has important future implications both for soil health and for opportunities for carbon sequestration.

  • True Cost Accounting

    June 18, 2018

    Anne Schwartz is a long-time CSANR Advisory Committee member, former Tilth Producers of Washington president, proprietor of Blue Heron Farm, and lifelong advocate for sustainable agriculture.  Anne is a guest blogger, challenging College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resources Sciences faculty, and CSANR faculty in particular, to focus on and address the challenges of True Cost Accounting.

    Anne Schwartz holding bunches of radishes

    Anne Schwartz

    True Cost Accounting is the study in economics that addresses all of the upstream and downstream costs and benefits associated with a set of management decisions and ensuing practices, and their long-term impacts on natural resources and communities.  Other terms used to indicate a similar approach include: Full Cost Accounting (FCA), Life Cycle Analysis (LCA), Triple Bottom Line (TBL), Natural Capital Accounting (NCA), and Cradle to Cradle (C2C).

  • Calculating Climate Benefits for Climate Smart Farms

    June 14, 2018
    Dale Gies near silos

    Farmer and long-time CSANR advisory committee member, Dale Gies. Photo: S. Kantor.

    What are the climate impacts of a given farm practice?  While we know lots of strategies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions on farms, quantifying that impact can be difficult.  However, there is at least one farm in our region –one that uses some pretty neat practices – for which scientists have attempted to answer that question.  And the farmer just happens to be a long-time member of CSANR’s advisory committee, Dale Gies.

News and Announcements

Our book is available now!

Book cover titled Advances in Dryland Farming in the Inland Pacific Northwest EM108 Washington State University Extension

Follow us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter

Follow @wsuCSANR