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May 2022

Newsletter Topics

RP Annual Meeting
The Art of Range
IYRP 2026


2023 RP Annual Meeting Planning
Manhattan, KS
Complete the survey to set the week in April 2023.
Responses due May 31.

Recap: RP Annual Meeting 2022

Ashley Hall
University of Arizona

Thanks to all who attended the 2022 Rangelands Partnership annual meeting in-person and virtually! Focused on the theme of Community, 20 participants traveled to Grand Junction, CO and 13 participants joined virtually.  
The meeting opened with a keynote talk, Community and Knowledge Transfer: Empowering Future and learning from Past Generations of Land Stewards, presented by Sarah Wentzel-Fisher, Quivira Coalition Executive Director. In her presentation, Sarah shared the history of the Quivira Coalition and how two of their ongoing projects are engaging the community and focusing on knowledge exchange.
The lightning reports were a huge hit again this year. The meeting evaluation revealed many participants enjoyed hearing about Extension and library programming in other states and the potential to collaborate with colleagues. There was an update on the United Nations approval of the International Year of Rangelands and Pastoralists (IYRP). The group discussed public outreach opportunities leading up to IYRP in 2026. 
Meeting participants received an update on RangeDocs, a new online search tool that allows users to pinpoint information within technical documents, funded by USDA NRCS Conservation Innovation Grant and a RREA National Focus Funds grant. The tool is designed to search a catalog of rangeland resources and Extension documents at the paragraph level. The team has worked with rangeland professionals to annotate and tag common rangeland terms where they appear in a document, reducing the time a reader must search for the information they need. Users can create a profile to save search results and create personal collections by topic. There are also curated collections created by experts which suggest relevant resources on various topics. The team will be adding more documents and continue to develop curated collections throughout the year.
Last year the new WERA proposal was submitted and approved. This proposal will not need to be renewed until September 2026; however, the RP must complete a mid-term review and submit an annual report.
During the next year, the Marketing and Social Media action group plan to work on marketing the website. The Collections and Content action group brainstormed on ways to reach out to universities to collect dissertations and theses that would be relevant to Rangelands Gateway. The Membership and Sustainability group discussed how to increase membership of librarians and Extension agents from universities that are currently not active in the Partnership.
Jeanne Pfander (Arizona) was elected as Secretary, Ashley Hall (Arizona) will move to the Vice Chair position, and Nancy Marshall (South Dakota) will move to Chair. Livia Olsen and Walt Fick agreed to host the 2023 meeting in Manhattan, Kansas. Complete the survey to help Livia and Walt set meeting dates for April 2023. The 2024 meeting will be held in Hawaii, and Texas A&M graciously offered to host the 2025 meeting. The RP Roundups will continue to be hosted in 2022-2023 and online marketing training webinars will be hosted in fall 2022. Many thanks to local host Retta Bruegger and outgoing Chair Krista Ehlert on their hard work to make the meeting successful. Onto another productive year with the Rangelands Partnership.

The Art of Range Podcast

By Tip Hudson
Washington State University

Episodes 82 and 83 are a two-part series with the authors of a recent ranch sustainability article in the journal Rangeland Ecology & Management who tell the story behind their work: Clare Kazanski & Marissa Ahlering (The Nature Conservancy), Patrick Lendrum (World Wildlife Fund), and Sheri Spiegal (Jornada Experimental Range). "There is a need for greater clarity on which indicators are most effective for assessing and monitoring sustainable management and continuous improvement of ranching operations. Our objective was to synthesize existing guidance on monitoring and assessing ranch-scale sustainability in the United States and to identify core ecological, social, and economic indicators that could identify well-managed ranching, support adaptive management, and demonstrate producers’ sustainability and continuous improvement to retailers and consumers.” Listen to Part 1 (Episode 82) and Part 2 (Episode 83).
Episode 81 is an interview with Jim O'Rourke and Barbara Hutchinson on the effort to establish a United Nations International Year of Rangelands and Pastoralists acknowledging the importance of rangelands and the people of rangelands. Listen to Jim and Barbara describe why this matters for people who already know and care about rangelands and how you can heighten awareness of the social and ecological importance of rangelands worldwide.
Be sure to subscribe in your podcasting app by searching for “The Art of Range” or by going to the links at the top of the Art of Range homepage. If you subscribe, new episodes will automatically show up in your podcast feed.

IYRP2026 Focuses on Outreach

By Barb Hutchinson
University of Arizona

Now that the IYRP2026 has been approved, the eleven regional support groups and communications teams are focusing on preparing plans for outreach activities up to and including 2026.  As you may have seen, the North America IYRP Communications Team is collecting input from members of the Rangelands Partnership as well as others through a survey to identify priority outreach activities. Responses are appreciated by June 1. 

Below are a few examples of ways you can support the IYRP:
  1. Invite others to share and like IYRP2026 North America social media (including yourself!)
    • Instagram: @iyrp2026northamerica
    • Facebook: @IYRP2026NorthAmerica
    • Twitter: @IYRP2026NA
  2. Join the IYRP North America Support Group or IYRP North America Communications Team
  3. Join the sub-team to help organize a North American Rangelands Film Festival for short videos (3-6 minute)
  4. Submit a short article about the IYRP to your local e-newsletters and listservs
  5. Identify short videos for featuring on the North America IYRP webpage
  6. Solicit funding for the proposed IYRP North America documentary film
  7. Going to a conference?  How about announcing the IYRP2026?
  8. Use the IYRP North America wallpaper and e-signatures to let your contacts know about IYRP2026
To assist with these efforts, a new section for Outreach Materials is now available on the IYRP North America webpage.  Keep watch as new materials will be added regularly.  Also, please feel free to contact Barb about any of the activities listed above. 

Global News and Resources

The report of the First Session of the Committee on Agriculture's Sub-Committee on Livestock captured the decisions of Member Nations.
Paper proposing the importance of range reseeding as an intervention that can improve pastoralists resilience to climate variability, alleviate poverty and improve environmental conditions; evaluates household and field characteristics from field owners who own and manage reseeding and rehabilitated fields in Lake Baringo.
PASTRES posted: " Over the last four weeks, our blog has featured four papers on the policy landscape for pastoralism in different regions of the world. Amid huge diversity, there are common challenges for pastoralists and policy makers alike.”
Managing Grazing to Restore Soil Health, Ecosystem Function, and Ecosystem Services. REVIEW article, Front. Sustain. Food Syst., 29 September 2020 

Grasslands & Savannahs Dialogue Platform Meeting from March 29, 2022.  Presentations included: Introduction to Open Ecosystem Network, Regenerative Grazing for Carbon Sequestration on Grasslands and Competing Demands: Optimizing Land Use to Maximize Benefits for People and Planet. Zoom recording. Passcode: #HhL%6xA
Browsing herbivores improve the state and functioning of savannas: a model assessment of alternative land-use strategies.  Wiley Online Library, Ecology and Evolution, March 18, 2022.

Grasslands Society of Southern Africa released the first edition of their publication Grassroots for 2022. 
Captivating information and inspiration:  FAO’s work on pastoralism and rangelands.  Pastoralist Knowledge Hub, April 2022, Issue #15.  Contains articles, stories, and announcements.

Pastoralism and large-scale Renewable energy and green hydrogen projects: Potential & Threats by Ann Waters-Bayer and Hussein Tadicha Wario. Heinrich Böll Foundation, Germany, May 2022.  Large-scale renewable energy projects are being developed in the drylands of Africa, Asia and Latina America without adequate consultation with pastoralists that have been using the land for grazing their livestock since time memorial. This report examines evidence from existing large-scale projects. It argues that an inclusive participatory design of such projects is necessary to safeguard human rights and ensure mutual benefit for pastoralist communities and society at large.
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Want to share a new resource, upcoming event, highlight a person, or anything else Partnership related?  Send a brief statement and picture to Amber Dalke.
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The Rangelands Partnership is a worldwide, multidisciplinary collaboration that provides resources needed to inform public debate and decision-making regarding today's grand challenges of food security, climate adaptation, public health, environmental impacts, and economic development as they relate to rangelands around the world.

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