Publication Date

Fall 11-27-2023

Document Type

Student Project

First Advisor

McKee, Emily

Degree Name

B.S. (Bachelor of Science)


Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability, and Energy (Environmental Studies)


Climate change is an increasingly urgent area of research due to the hardships it causes for lands and communities across the globe. Specifically in regard to the United States (U.S.), climate change has many concerning implications on our agricultural system. Increased weather hazards, decreased crop production, and drought are just a few of the hardships American farmers are facing in their fight to keep their farms alive and feed their communities, despite a rapidly changing climate. This study investigates how farmers can fight and prevent climate change through the use of specific mitigation and adaptation strategies on their farms. Semi- structured interviews were conducted among environmental and agricultural professionals from the Midwest U.S. with the intent of uncovering their opinions on climate-smart agricultural practices, their effectiveness, and the feasibility of their implementation on American farms. Analysis of the participants’ responses indicate their primary concerns about the current U.S. agricultural system are the unsustainable practices that are contributing to climate change. The interview data suggests that a multidimensional approach that integrates a variety of sustainable practices – including reducing tillage, enhancing irrigation and animal waste processing systems, diversifying crops, and integrating ‘green’ energy – would be the most effective and feasible way for U.S. farmers to combat climate change. Further research in this area could examine how effective these strategies are in practice and dive deeper into understanding how widespread their implementation currently is.

Barry_FightingClimateChange.pdf (408 kB)
Research Poster

Suggested Citation

Barry, A. Breaking the Loop: Strategies for Fighting Climate Change on U.S. Farms (2023). Honors Capstone.