I’m a part of the Regenerative Grazing to Mitigate Climate Change project. We’re working to figure out how grazing practices can mitigate climate change, and our project has two arms. One arm is practical, such as how grazing practices actually work and how can they mitigate climate change mainly by sequestering carbon in the soil. The second arm has a law and policy angle, such as how researching different laws and policies can help promote these practices and make it easier for farmers to implement regenerative grazing in their fields in North Carolina.
This year, our leadership team is two faculty from the Law School (the Environmental Law and Policy Clinic) and two faculty from the Duke Carbon Offsets Program, which brings a good kind of diversity of experience. The team includes about 12 students, and they are in a variety of programs. I'm in the law school, and there are also Master of Public Policy and Master of Environmental Management students. We have a couple of undergraduates from Duke, but we also have students from UNC, NC State and NC Central, which is really cool because those students have much more of an agriculture background.
I think the most valuable part of Bass Connections has been the partnerships with the faculty and community. I’ve grown really close with all of the faculty leadership, but in particular, with two faculty members from the Law School. We’ve gotten to develop a really close relationship through the project, and I’ve been able to collaborate with them on other projects at the Law School. I’m now a teaching assistant for one of the faculty supervisors on the project, helping out with his Food and Agriculture Law course.
Another special part of Bass Connections is the community partnerships. We’ve been working with the Triangle Land Conservancy on a specific piece of land, on which they are implementing some of these grazing practices. Developing relationships with people who are in the Triangle area has been really valuable, both personally and professionally.
Comments are from a virtual Bass Connections event in Fall 2020.