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New Sustainable Ranching Enterprise Diploma at TRU in Williams Lake

The Ministry of Advanced Education will provide Thompson Rivers University with one-time funding of $154,000 for developing a proposed new Applied Sustainable Ranching Enterprise Diploma program in Williams Lake. The two-year program aims to give individuals the skills to develop a sustainable ranching enterprise by examining best practices in business strategy, financial management, operations, marketing and enterprise diversification. It addresses the needs of the local ranching environment with a focus on sustainable management of natural resources and building resilience into ranching enterprises both at home and abroad. An advisory committee of ranching representatives from the Cariboo region ensured the program was built by industry, for industry.

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Agriculture research needs to focus on future challenges

The institute said rising population, climate change and the need to find 
alternatives to fossil fuels are priorities Canada needs a forward-looking agriculture research policy to help feed a burgeoning global population, cope with climate change and develop alternatives to fossil fuels, says the Agriculture Institute of Canada. It has released a proposal to create a strong scientific base that “will be the primary source of innovation and productivity enhancements needed to meet these future challenges,” says AIC CEO Serge Buy.

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BC Agricultural Fencing Handbook

This factsheet lists agricultural fencing information for planning and constructing both electric and non-electric fences for livestock control, crop protection and special purposes.

For specific needs, individual factsheets may be obtained.

All the factsheets listed make up the B.C. Agricultural Fencing Handbook binder of information ( Order # 307.000-0 ).

CLICK HERE to access document.

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Irrigation Project PHOTOS

Irrigation Project Overview: The adaptation goal is to identify optimal combinations of irrigation triggers, irrigation saturation, and nitrogen fertilizer levels to increase crop yields and improve nitrogen fertilizer uptake.  We are also comparing traditional vacuum-gauge tensiometer probes with electronic tensiometer probes.  Tensiometer probes installed at various depths indicate soil moist

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BCFC Project: Demonstrating Innovative Forage Production Practices to Increase Climate Change Adaptation (2014-2017)

Project Summary:  This project will assist in the development of on-farm adaptations focused on producing high quality forage under a variety of conditions.  Through the development of a weather station network within the production area, the evaluation of production techniques using on-farm trials, and the creation of a manual for conducting on-farm trials, this project seeks to increase the info

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PFCA PROJECT: STRATEGIES TO IMPROVE FORAGE YIELD AND QUALITY WHILE ADAPTING TO CLIMATE CHANGE (2015-2018)

Project Summary:  This project will help the dairy sector and other producers of forages in the Fraser Valley and Vancouver Island by providing a modern tool-kit of practical adaptive management strategies to improve yield and quality of the forage crops under future scenarios of changing climate and increasingly variable weather. Efficient forage production is at the heart of profitable cattle operations.

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Right to Farm legislation goes under review

Industry sceptical because of changes to the land reserve,abrupt dismissal of Richard Bullock. The province has quietly launched a review of the BC Farm Practices Protection Act, consulting municipalities in advance of discussions with industry later this month. Passed in 1996, the legislation has never been reviewed. Municipalities are welcoming the move but RegEns, executive director of the BC Agriculture Council, says industry is more sceptical of the province's motives following controversial changes to the Agricultural Land Reserve and its abrupt dismissal of former land commission chair Richard Bullock. "We're concerned," Ens says. "As a council, we don't have an official position, but in the industry there's a lot of scepticism." The province contacted the BC Agriculture Council in early July, Ens says, and the council has met with ministry staff once to date. Consultations with municipalities followed, first with the four municipalities whose ability to pass bylaws affecting agriculture is regulated under the BC Local Government Act (including Abbotsford, Delta, Kelowna and Langley Township) and then unregulated municipalities.

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Bats are Worth 1 Billion to Agriculture (2015)

Corn farmers, look to the sky at dusk and mutter thanks to the bats swooping over your moth-ridden fields: Those winged mammals put more than $1 billion back into your collective pockets, a new study suggests. The first-of-its-kind research used nets to fully enclose 20-by-20-meter fragments of large corn fields at night, thereby excluding foraging bats, throughout the growing seasons in southern Illinois in 2013 and 2014.

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Agricultural products are one of the world’s biggest sources of plastic trash

From the pipes and tubes that deliver irrigation water to the pots seedlings are grown in to those delightfully tacky blue and orange bits of twine that bind bales of hay, plastic products are stitched into almost every agricultural activity. Agricultural films—thin plastic membranes used to cover the soil for purposes of weed suppression, temperature enhancement, fertilizer uptake and more—are one of the largest contributors to the billions of pounds of plastics that are discarded by farms across the planet each year.

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New Law Gives BC More Authority Involving Water Use

A scorching hot summer, abnormally low rainfall and dwindling reservoirs meant there wasn’t enough water to sprinkle lawns, fill pools or wash cars in Metro Vancouver and many other cities across B.C. Suddenly, interest spiked in understanding how the province protects and allocates its newest precious resource. There was far less public attention last spring when the provincial government refreshed the 100-year-old laws governing water by passing a new Water Sustainability Act. The centrepiece of the legislation was an extension of British Columbia’s existing licensing and regulation regime for surface water, meaning streams and lakes, onto groundwater, which is pumped from wells. The change closes a loophole where someone denied a licence to get surface water — due to limited supply or for environmental protection — could simply walk a dozen metres onto the nearest shore, drill a well and pump out an unlimited amount of groundwater without penalty. “We were the only jurisdiction in North America that had no regulation on groundwater, other than California,” Schreier said. California has also recently closed that loophole. As Environment Minister Mary Polak puts it: “Anybody could drill down into groundwater and take what they wanted, and as much as they wanted.” For a few more months, they still can. B.C.’s new rules come into effect on Jan. 1.

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