The AFRI Resilient Agroecosystems in a Changing Climate Challenge Area focuses on understanding the interaction between climate variability and agricultural production systems so that we can develop the plants, animals and management systems that will be robust and productive under changing environmental conditions; while also providing the important ecosystem services needed from these lands (e.g., healthy soils, clean air, clean water). Goals of this challenge area include providing risk management information and tools to enable land managers to stay viable and productive and reducing the use of energy, nitrogen, and water, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The AFRI Resilient Agroecosystems in a Changing Climate Challenge Area supports activities that enable the nation's agriculture and forest lands to adapt to current and future climate conditions (including increased droughts and other extreme events), maintain or increase production, efficiently use soil and water resources, and improve soil, water and air conditions. Land managers are experiencing more variable weather patterns, especially with regard to water issues such as more intense patterns of droughts and floods, and the lengthening of the growing season over the last three decades. Research results from this challenge area will lead to improved management systems and crop varieties that consider the risks associated with a more variable environment. Another long-term outcome of this challenge area is reducing the environmental impact while maintaining a productive food, feed, fiber, and fuel system.