Community Agriculture Alliance columns

This weekly column about agriculture issues is written by area farmers, ranchers and policymakers. It publishes on Fridays in the Steamboat Today.

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Community Agriculture Alliance: My favorite things

‘Tis the season to reflect on the past year and to savor what we’ve accomplished at Historic Routt County. We are proud of our role in saving Routt County’s special places, and the year has been a whirlwind of activity with preservation projects, events, socials, awards and win-win partnerships.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Lodgepole pine, a story of resilience

Sometimes it seems that lodgepole pine doesn’t get the respect it deserves. In the wake of the recent mountain pine beetle epidemic, some people question whether it’s a good thing to plant lodgepole seedlings on their property. “Won’t the beetles just get them?” they ask.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Holiday tree care

The holidays are upon us, and for many that comes with the age-old tradition of putting up a tree. One of my favorite traditions is taking my family to a forested area and scouring the hillsides for the perfect tree, always excited to have that fresh-cut scent once again filling our home.

Community Agriculture Alliance: State of the Upper Yampa River Watershed

We drink it, we grow food with it, we play in it — the Yampa River Watershed provides for our community in a way that the early settlers recognized when they built Steamboat Springs at the confluence of the Yampa River and six tributary streams.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Environmental Literacy Program helps school districts implement objectives

Nationally, studies have shown that elementary school students spend less than 20 minutes per day in science education. Thankfully, Routt County schools are doing much better than that.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Take Charge Energy Challenge returns to Steamboat schools

This school year’s Take Charge Energy Challenge starts next week, with the five schools in the Steamboat Springs School District competing to see who can reduce their electricity use by the most kilowatt-hours during the last two weeks of November.

Community Agriculture Alliance: The how, where and why to buying local

Interested in local food and products, but not sure where to find them? Here are some easy answers.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Rethinking grazing

In the '50s and '60s, there was a real movement to remove grazing as a use for public lands here in the West because it was thought that grazing was responsible for all sorts of ecological ills such as erosion and endangering species. In the past, the solution was to remove all human activity from the land. However, the results were not what was expected.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Working toward a goal

Throughout Colorado, conversations about water continue to spark interest and debate. Colorado’s population is expected to grow by 8 million to 10 million people by 2050 and the state is searching for answers that will meet future demands.

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Web marketplace lowers threshold for selling locally produced food products

The Community Agriculture Alliance has picked up where a group of committed volunteers with the Yampa Valley Co-op left off, this time with a Web-based ordering and delivery solution for locally produced food.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Sustainable agriculture products on the Routt National Forest

Events such as the recent Garden-to-Table dinner in Steamboat Springs highlight sustainable agriculture and show the local communities’ commitment toward supporting efforts taking place at the gardens of Yampatika’s Legacy Ranch and Colorado Mountain College’s sustainable studies and culinary management programs.

Community Agriculture Alliance: Local food the highlight at 2014 Soup Bowl Supper

During the past several years, there has been a growing international trend in the demand for local foods. The Yampa Valley has a long history of agriculture, and the local food trend has noticeably spiked here, as well.

Community Agriculture Alliance: High altitude harvest

In most places in the U.S., fall is a time where pumpkins grow fat, and farmers and gardeners watch as their fall crops take shape. The evenings start to get a little chilly and relief from the hot days is welcomed. But not here in the Yampa Valley.

Community Agriculture Alliance: A face-to-face with legislators in DC

Each September Rocky Mountain Farmers Union members are in Washington, D.C., to meet with lawmakers and USDA officials. That’s right, farmers and ranchers sit down in offices with senators and representatives to discuss farm policy and rural issues. These trips are known as “fly-ins.” We just got back from one.

Community Ag Alliance: First Plate and Pint farm-to-table dinner a success

Sixty lucky people found out just how delicious it can be to eat local Saturday night at the first Plate and Pint farm-to-table dinner.

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