Agriculture & Livestock Sustainability

This section provides farmers (and others) topical information and useful tools to explore and measure sustainability globally - and locally. It’s a diverse collection of sites and multimedia sources. Six are highlighted to get you started. Additional resources follow, organized by resource type.


Carbon Farming | Carbon Cycle InstituteThis US-based organization works to join climate science and agriculture. It aims to involve strategic partners such as farmers, ranchers, researchers, public institutions, and businesses to advance “natural, science-verified solutions that reduce atmospheric carbon while promoting environmental stewardship, social equity, and economic sustainability.”
COMET Farm: COMET-Farm Tool | US Department of Agriculture (USDA) & Colorado State UniversityCOMET-Farm is a tool developed for farm and ranch carbon, and greenhouse gas accounting. The tool guides users through farm and ranch management practices including alternative future management scenarios and generates a report comparing current with potential future scenarios.
Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (GASL)A partnership of global livestock stakeholders from agriculture, government, education and private sectors. Purpose is to build consensus towards sustainable food security and resource management while addressing key equity, health and growth challenges.
Natural Resources & Environment: Climate Change | US Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service (USDA ERSUS Department of Agriculture web page that aggregates articles, reports and current statistics on climate change issues related to agriculture.
Regeneration InternationalAn international organization supporting the transition to regenerative agriculture through education, network-building and policy work.
Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL)Switzerland-based global organization leading scientific and applied research on organic agriculture, with a special emphasis on transferring knowledge quickly from research to advisory work. Encourages sensible development and trains farmers on effective, sustainable practices around the world.


100 Best Sustainable Agriculture Books of All Time, various authors. 2021.A curated list on the Book Authority website based on recommendations from leaders and experts.
A Soil Owner's Manual: How to Restore and Maintain Soil Health, Jon Stika.  2016.A short manual sharing ways to solve common, dysfunctional soil problems by working with natural processes to restore soil health.
Dirt to Soil: One Family's Journey Into Regenerative Agriculture, Gabe Brown, Courtney White. 2018.In this personal account, Gabe Brown tells the journey of transitioning a conventional farm to a regenerative model. He shares the struggles and experience he gained over the course of 20 years, including many innovative solutions and success stories from all over the world.
The Farm Bill: a Citizen's Guide, Daniel Imhoff, Christina Badaracco. 2019.Guide to understanding the regularly-revised and wide-ranging legislation called the US Farm Bill - including its history, main components and broad implications in everyday life.
The Good Life: Helen and Scott Nearing's Sixty Years of Self-sufficient Living, Helen & Scott Nearing. 1990.True story of how a couple abandoned the city for a rural life “with minimal cash and the knowledge of self reliance and good health”
The Market Gardener, Jean-Martin Fortier. 2014.A hands-on book from Eastern Quebec, Canada, sharing how to succeed in high-yield food production with low-tech and small acreage.


Organic Labeling | US Department of Agriculture (USDA)USDA National Organic Program (NOP) provides regulations for organic agricultural products that are either produced in the US or imported for sale in the country. Includes requirements for growing, handling and labeling organic agricultural products.


Center for Regenerative Agriculture and Resilient SystemsCalifornia State University, Chico-sponsored center seeks to promote a regenerative agriculture system that addresses climate change, enhances soil health and water and food security while increasing yields, health and prosperity.  
Climate Change & Agriculture | Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)Climate Change & Agriculture is a key area of study and project emphasis for NRDC. The organization consists of three million members and online activists plus a network of scientists, lawyers, and policy advocates across the globe . The goal is “ensuring the rights of all people to the air, the water, and the wild. “
Cultivating a Healthy Food System | Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture (CUESA)San Francisco, US-based, organization aiming to “inspire eaters of all ages to take part in creating a fair, regenerative, and delicious food future for all.”
Institute for Agricultural and Trade PolicyWorks “locally and globally at the intersection of policy and practice” to share ideas and promote sustainable solutions for people, farmers and policymakers.
Sustainability Community | Springer NatureInteractive user community that consolidates research, commentary and practical advice on sustainability. Includes topical resources for farmers seeking sustainable solutions and agricultural best practice ideas.


Farmers for Climate SolutionsA Canadian coalition of farmer organizations promoting policies and stewardship practices that help farmers reduce agricultural emissions and build resilience.
Rodale InstituteOrganization formed in 1947 to conduct research and promote regenerative organic and more efficient modern farming methods.
Speak up for Farmers Campaign | Global CitizenUS-based organization with prominent global corporate partners that focus on encouraging worldwide advocacy for the impact of climate change on farmers.
Trees.orgA global organization that provides or partners in training farmers in six targeted African nations to regenerate their land through a four-year program called the Forest Garden Approach.

Non- and Not-For-Profit Organizations

Alternative Land Use ServicesInnovative community-developed and farmer-delivered charitable program balancing agricultural needs and local environmental challenges through collaborative sustainability projects.
Farmer Resource Network/Farm AidLaunched in the US in 1985 as a one-time music festival to raise money for struggling family farmers and highlight their challenges. Farm Aid evolved into an ongoing, nonprofit organization that aims to “promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture - to keep family farmers on the land.”
Sustainable TableMelbourne, Australia-based, grassroots nonprofit bringing together food system practitioners, thought leaders and aligned funders to direct capital investments into regenerative food systems at the rate required to avoid climate catastrophe. It provides robust governance and rigorous assessment frameworks in an open-source knowledge commons.
The Soil AssociationThe Soil Association is a UK-based charity “working to transform the way we eat, farm and care for the natural world.” The organization’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Soil Association Certification Limited is the UK’s largest organic certification body.

Online Calculators/Tools

AgrecalcAgrecalc is a carbon footprint tool designed by Scottish agricultural colleges and consultant organizations to identify the main sources of carbon emissions. Allows sustainable improvements to be monitored and defines benchmark key performance indicators using an extensive UK farm database.
Cool Farm ToolOnline application from global consortium Cool Farm Alliance provides farmers methods to measure carbon emissions, blue + green footprints, and assess biodiversity management.
Farm Carbon Calculator“Created by farmers for farmers”, the Farm Carbon Calculator is one of several tools provided by a UK-based “Community Interest Company”. Estimates the total carbon emissions and carbon offsets, expressed as tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e), percentage of total emissions/sequestration, and the carbon balance of a local agriculture enterprise/ farm. - Eating SustainablySeveral online tools and information are provided to help consumers and producers make informed food and growing choices.
Global Farm MetricThe Global Farm Metric (GFM) members include farming and environment groups, certifiers, food companies, financial services, and government. Aims to create worldwide standards for measuring “whole farm” sustainability on all farming systems and landscapes.


Farming for NatureA podcast series by farmers for farmers where they share tips and advice on why and how to enhance nature on their farms.
The Big Shift for Small FarmsAn Australia-based podcast that shares insights and knowledge from farmers, scientists and industry on the need for changes to the agricultural system. There is a companion video series from the sponsoring organization, Greater Sydney Local Land Services, called  “From the Ground Up – marketing fundamentals”.
Young FarmerThis podcast takes a farm-centric point of view to address the critical issues shaping the future of agriculture.

Documentaries and Videos

Biggest Little Farm, John Chester. 2019.Follows the eight year journey of a couple that moved from the city to 200 acres of depleted land, which they successfully transformed using regenerative agriculture methods.
Joel Salatin and The 10 Biggest Homestead PitfallsA 40 minute YouTube video, based on the book Polyface Designs  that shares a sample lesson of eco-pioneering, Virginia farmer Joel Salatin. Salatin describes the ways he and his family have tried to promote their mission to develop “emotionally, economically, environmentally enhancing agricultural enterprises and facilitate their duplication throughout the world.”
Kiss the Ground, Josh & Rebecca Tickell. 2020.Winner of numerous awards, this 2020 documentary explores how regenerative agriculture practices can “completely and rapidly stabilize Earth’s climate, restore lost ecosystems and create abundant food supplies. “
Paul & Elizabeth Kaiser: Sustainable Farming 2.0The Kaisers question and suggest alternatives for many “common/best practices'' in their approach to sustainable farming.


A Framework for Farm-Level Sustainability ProjectsA framework created by Farmers for Sustainable Food that tailors global approaches to agricultural sustainability to include regional financial, economic and conservation realities.
EcoWatchOnline community of experts publishing science-based news and content on environmental issues, causes, and solutions for a healthier planet and life. Examples include climatarian diets & other sustainable food topics.
Farm Sustainability AssessmentA user guide from global corporate consortium SAI Platform (formerly known as Sustainable Agriculture Initiative) to complete a farm sustainability assessment, complete with questions, guidance and recommendations.
Policy Paper: The Farmers’ Route to Sustainable Food SystemsPolicy paper created by the World Farming Organisation that outlines a call for action for farmer-driven solutions to sustainability in agriculture.