Enhanced ecosystem services and economic returns through the expansion of Climate Smart Agriculture production strategies in the Peace Country

Project Details

Status: Completed
Investment: $73,784
Commodity: Beef Cattle
Organization: Peace Country Beef & Forage Association
Investigator: Liisa Jeffrey

The Alberta Peace Country (PC) occupies 11.1% of Alberta's total acreage, and represents about 15% of the beef herd.

Why is this research important for Alberta ag?

The Alberta Peace Country (PC) occupies 11.1% of Alberta's total acreage, and represents about 15% of the beef herd. This project will consist of a series of small plot trials at strategic locations throughout the PC that will answer recent producer questions on adaptation, performance, and agroecosystem functions of grain and perennial forage crops, and new annual crops including cover crops.

Warming, drought, and increasing climate variability are predicted to become more prevalent in the future, and therefore raise the critical need for cost-effective, timely, and robust tools for evaluating, monitoring, and measuring

Intercropping is an eco-functional intensification practice that can boost crop productivity and support sustainable agriculture. Intercropping addresses some of the major problems associated with modern farming, including moderate yield, pest and pathogen accumulation, soil degradation, and environmental deterioration. This project will investigate the agronomic, economic, and environmental benefits of different production practices in a variety of trails in the PC.

What benefits can producers expect from this research?

This project aims to use a climate-smart agriculture (CSA) approach to pursue the goals of sustainably increasing grain and forage production, while also increasing soil health and farm income. This approach will provide information on new ways that producers can gain multiple benefits on their operations, while adapting to climate change. These include improved filtration of snow melt and rainfall, nutrient cycling and erosion protection, improved crop input decisions, and practices that enhance carbon sinks.

How will these research findings reach producers on-farm?

Knowledge will be transferred to producers through research posters, tours and events, plot tours, podcasts, and annual reports.

Funded in part by the Government of Canada under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.