Climate mitigation activists want to monitor carbon using ‘tracking and accountability’

The Senate Agriculture Committee met Friday to discuss climate mitigation efforts for land use.

During a presentation to the Senate Agriculture Committee on Friday, several witnesses shared how to fight climate change — including monitoring the energy and land usage by farmers.

“One of the proposals from the Agriculture and Ecosystems subcommittee is to utilize the same tracking and accountability framework that exists for water and apply greenhouse gas mitigation benefits to those practices,” said Ryan Patch, the Agriculture Climate and Land Use Policy manager for the Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets.

He said farmers will not only be asked to reduce their carbon outputs, but also engage in more carbon storage efforts.

Wikimedia Commons/Mac

CARBON EXCHANGE: Multiple witnesses testifying before the Senate Agriculture Committee on Friday said they foresee some form of carbon accounting system to be implemented in the agricultural industry.

“And when I say mitigation, a term that’s defined in the Global Warming Solutions Act, it means both a reduction in emissions and the increased rate of sequestration or the storage of carbon in soil,” Patch said.

Peter Walke, commissioner for the Department of Environmental Conservation, also suggested that the state monitor carbon usage.

“We have a budget for carbon that we can have in the atmosphere without causing significant warming,” he said.

Lauren Oates, the interim director of Government Relations and Policy for The Nature Conservancy in Vermont, also addressed the committee. She warned about dangerous weather events on the horizon if such climate change mitigation isn’t adopted.

“We have to plan for and adapt to these more significant weather events,” Oates said. “We’re also going to experience more increased and intensive droughts, and prolonged heat exposure, especially in our more urban areas– [plus] an increase in tick-born diseases, declined air and water quality, and more.”

Oates said private landowners are going to need to work with them in climate mitigation efforts.

“Because of the significant amount of private land, our focus is on our natural and working lands economy and the role that they can play in helping us adapt to and mitigate climate change,” she said. “We really need to work with our landowners and managers to leverage their lands and empower them to do the work that we need them to do on that land, to sequester carbon, store carbon, and adapt to the changes that we are already experiencing.”

State Sen. Bobby Starr, D-Essex-Orleans, reminded the committee that when gas prices differ measurably from one state to another, motorists go where it’s cheaper.

“I know that if you go along the western border of Vermont from the north all the way to Bennington, many New Yorkers come over here in Vermont to buy fuel because it’s much cheaper,” he said.

Collin Smythe, environmental Analyst for the Agency of Natural Resources, Air Quality & Climate Division, noted how convoluted the data can be regarding how much carbon gets attributed to which state. For instance, if New Yorkers came and purchased fuel in Vermont, that’s accredited to Vermont’s carbon output; But someone who crosses into New York for gas but comes right back to live and drive mostly in Vermont, that’s not accredited to Vermont.

“I think it’s a balancing act,” he said. ” … I think the main point is there’s no real perfect way to account for fuel within our boundaries.”

According to, world natural and man-made sources combine for over “34 billion tonnes each year” of carbon emissions. In contrast, according to a report by the Vermont Agency of Natural resources in 2016, the state accounted for about 10 million metric tons of emissions, or about 0.03 percent of the world’s total emissions.

Not all farmers agree that climate mitigation is affordable or easy. In the Netherlands, farmers are also being asked to make sacrifices to mitigate climate change, and it comes with a cost.

“Dutch farmers have found themselves pushed to the wall by the government, which is offering them a final choice to make their farms more climate-friendly, or change jobs,” The South African reports.

Watch Friday’s full committee meeting online here.

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Mac

12 thoughts on “Climate mitigation activists want to monitor carbon using ‘tracking and accountability’

  1. When will the convoy form to clog up Montpelier? People can point out all the problems…don’t see much action on the solution side to remove these clowns from their perches of power. Canadians are doing something…are we going to do anything or just complain?

    • There is the rub. There are two groups elected, along with the libertarians, et al.

      What are they doing? I’m still paying for the epic failure of starting a new political party.

      A friend said to me after it was all over, ” ther is one thing the two parties can agree on, they don’t want a third party!”

      And many others don’t either!

      Learned a ton. Expensive lesson. Censorship was OFF the Charts!

  2. Monitor = Control

    They have not yet been able to control every move by land use regulation, but they could by fuel, digging with a stick is so b.c., but then they would control all food too!

    Notice how they are not interested in monitoring or taxing the following

    Drug trade, black market in Vermont.

    they interested in monitoring pre treatmemt for covid, only because they want to restrict what can be done and that it doesn’t interfer with their little money making scheme.

    They don’t monitor their friends, take head.

  3. I think we should be working to mitigate the mitigatees… 0.03% of the worlds problem
    shouldn’t be our problem… perhaps the mitigators should go on a world tour to convince
    countries with over 10% the error of their ways.. that would be a more efferent use of the
    their worthlessness…

  4. Sounds to me like these people have never turned a shovel, and they want to end farming in Vermont. They are either nut cases or communists.

  5. So farmers who presumably are producing food for families of Vermont will once again be asked to make inordinate sacrifices while the tourist industry is encouraging flatlanders to drive to, and around Vermont, for the sole purpose of providing more dollars to the state’s coffers. After all, ski lifts and snow making are essential and require no carbon based fuels. And it is important that we convince snowmobilers to drag their gas burning machines behind enormous pickups and SUV’s from Connecticut and NY to Vermont in order that they can be entertained.
    How about those so concerned with carbon sequestration design a plan to pay landowners to keep, or plant, trees on their land or, at the very least, eliminate property taxes on all forest land. I won’t hold my breath.

  6. Of course, these socialist want to “monitor” everything.
    “Monitor” must be the new definition for rationing.

    What a fantastic way to encourage farming in Vermont!

  7. If you wrote this as fiction, you couldn’t sell it. Fiction has to make sense. If the AGW activists motivate an exodus from Vermont, what’s accomplished? True, they do lower Vermont’s carbon dioxide footprint, but the people who move will just generate carbon dioxide elsewhere. And no matter what the fanatics do with Vermont’s air, it’ll be gone tomorrow. It’ll become New Hampshire’s air, then out over the Atlantic.

    • You forgot that you are trying to explain logic to the flat earth society. These people are so ignorant they believe that the air outside jus hangs around to be changed. They missed the class or it was never taught that the earth revolves every 24 hrs. and travels around the sun every 365 days. I hope this information disturb their grand plan to change the climate. I would also point out that our climate is in relation to our distance from the equator and the axis tilt of the earth in relation to the sun. Of course we all know this is a game of who can grab the money. These people are bought and owned by the people who will benefit financially from this boondoggle known now as climate change after they realized the earth has been warming since the big bang.

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