Southeastern agriculture is faced with many challenges, including hurricanes. Most recently, Hurricanes Irma, Florence and Michael have devastated sectors of southeastern agriculture.
Steven McNulty, director of the Southeast U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Climate Hub, wants to help farmers prepare their land as best as they can before a storm hits.
McNulty organized a recent meeting in Gainesville to gauge what it takes for land to be prepared for a major storm. Everything from nurseries to livestock was discussed at the meeting. Researchers from Florida and South Carolina gave presentations on best practices to take before, during and after the storm. Then, audience members were able to discuss the presentations and storm issues they have experienced. The audience was made up of mostly USDA agents, research professionals from the Southeast and students in agricultural programs.
The information shared in the meeting, both during the presentations and discussion times, will be taken into account as McNulty and his team develop a hurricane preparedness manual specifically for landowners. He will be looking toward county Extension agents and Natural Resources Conservation Service agents to help distribute the manual once it is completed.
Big questions the manual will answer include:
- Who should a farmer contact after a storm has hit?
- Where should a farmer go for help if resources such as phone, TV and radio are down?
McNulty is hoping the manual will be a good resource for storm-affected farmers to find help and get their land back in production.
Hear more about the manual and the hurricane meeting:
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