The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today awarded $19.5 million to support research, education and Extension activities associated with climate solutions in agriculture aimed at the impacts of climate variability and change on dairy and beef cattle. Two funding recipients, Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma, are members of the South Central Climate Science Center university consortium.
Oklahoma State University (OSU) in Stillwater, Oklahoma, received $9.6 million over five years to better understand vulnerability and resilience of Southern Great Plains beef in an environment of increased climate variability, dynamic land-use and fluctuating markets. The team's goal is to safeguard regional beef production while mitigating the environmental footprint of agriculture. The project also includes education and Extension components to train the next generation of producers and researchers in addressing the impact of climate on beef cattle. Using a community- and citizen-science approach, the project will train young students and citizens to use GPS-enabled digital cameras and smartphones and web data portals to participate in field data collection. The geospatial data will be integrated into a portal for community-based analysis and inventory and used to educate the general public on climate change related to range-based beef production.