USA Today: Climate change already felt by farmers: Column

By U.S. Senator Jon Tester —

I am a third-generation farmer from north-central Montana. My wife, Sharla, and I farm the same land homesteaded by my grandparents a century ago, continuing a Montana tradition of making a living off the land. We’ve farmed this land for nearly 40 years.

For the average American, particularly those of us from rural America, the political conversation about climate change seems worlds away. For us, warmer winters and extreme weather events are already presenting new challenges for our way of life.

It’s an experience with climate change that too often goes unreported and overlooked. But as a nation we must start paying attention, because the experiences of America’s farmers, ranchers, and sportsmen and women will change the debate if policymakers start listening.