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Emeritus helping to slow climate change

March 24, 2009

KALAMAZOO--Kenneth A. Dahlberg, professor emeritus in political science and environmental studies at Western Michigan University, is working with a group of Michiganders to help slow down climate change.

Dahlberg has been serving this past year on the Agriculture, Forestry and Waste Workgroup of the Governor's Climate Action Council. The advisory council was formed in 2007, partly to develop a climate action plan for Michigan.

Dahlberg was able to get a policy option promoting local and regional food systems included as one of the recommendations approved by the council in its final report, which was posted at www.miclimatechange.us earlier this month.

He says opposition from industrial farming groups prevented inclusion of a policy option promoting organic farming. That type of farming is effective in capturing and sequestering carbon and has been recommended internationally as one of the best ways to reduce hunger and unemployment in poor countries.

Dahlberg, a WMU Distinguished Faculty Scholar, came to the University in 1966 and retired in 2001 after 35 years of service.

He is an expert on the human dimensions of global change and sustainable agriculture and also has worked on policies to maintain genetic and biological diversity. In the past decade, his research has focused on local food policy councils as well as sustainable agriculture and regenerative food systems.

The state environmental workgroup Dahlberg has been serving on is specifically charged with:

  • Producing an inventory and forecast of greenhouse gas sources and emissions from 1990-2020.
  • Considering potential state and multistate actions to mitigate and adapt to climate change in various sectors, including energy supply, energy efficiency and conservation, industrial process and waste management, transportation and land use, and agriculture and forestry.
  • Developing a comprehensive climate action plan with specific recommendations for reducing greenhouse gases in Michigan by business, government and the general public.
  • Advising state and local governments on measures to address climate change.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

WMU News
Office of University Relations
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5433 USA
(269) 387-8400