CISA’s Climate Change Programs and Resources

This section provides information and links to CISA’s own programs and resources designed to support farms and farm businesses adapt to climate change. Need something else? We want to hear about it – contact the Climate Program, 413-665-7100 ext 17.

Check out upcoming climate change related events here: Upcoming Workshops, Webinars & Events

Adaptation and Mitigation Technical Assistance

CISA staff can provide technical assistance on many aspects of climate change mitigation and adaptation and when we can’t help we can probably help find someone who can. If you have a project in mind, an impact you are not sure how to address, or just want to throw some ideas at us, please contact the Climate Program Coordinator, Stephen Taranto, 413-665-7100 ext 17, or at

Climate Change Adaptation Grants

CISA offers Climate Change Adaptation Grants of up to $3000 to support farms and farm-related businesses seeking to expand practices that foster adaptation to climate change and contribute to the resilience of the local food system. Funds can be used for consultations, project guidance, project design and planning, and general mentorship from CISA technical assistance providers.

Examples of recently funded projects include:

  • Water management design for an elderberry orchard
  • In-depth mentorship on small-scale commercial seed production
  • Flood risk assessment and management recommendations for a large farm on the Westfield River
  • In-depth training on commercial composting systems that incorporate livestock processing wastes

In most cases, funds cannot be used for infrastructure and materials, however when such costs are low relative to the overall project budget they will be considered.

Farms interested in improving and/or implementing climate change adaptation practices and building an inclusive and resilient food system are encouraged to apply.

To request support, complete the Climate Change Adaptation Grant Application Form. For questions or if you’d like to discuss your project before applying, please email or call (413) 665-7100 ext. 17.

Emergency Farm Fund

Para obtener información en español, haga clic aquí.

The Emergency Farm Fund offers interest-free loans to eligible farms struggling to meet their immediate financial needs because of income and/or equipment loss due to weather-related impacts. We accept applications on a rolling basis with no deadline for loans of up to $5000. Following a widespread weather disaster, we will consider offering larger loans of $5000-$25,000.

The Emergency Farm Fund was established in 2011 in response to damage from Hurricane Irene suffered by farms in western Massachusetts. The goal of the fund is to respond to critical, time sensitive needs and help farms recover from their losses and continue farming.

Loan applications will be accepted from farms that:

  • Have suffered financial losses of crops, buildings and/or equipment due to weather-related events
  • Operate in Franklin, Hampshire, and/or Hampden counties in Massachusetts
  • Demonstrate need and capacity to repay the loan (a perfect credit history is not required)
  • Have gross annual sales of approximately $20,000 or more.

If there are more applicants than funds available, priority will be given to farm businesses that:

  • Experienced significant losses relative to business size;
  • Demonstrate high potential to benefit from the loan;
  • Are owned by one or more limited resource producers; and/or
  • Have not received an Emergency Farm Fund loan in the past five years.

Loan Amount and Rate:
Loans are available at a 0% interest rate for up to $5,000; upon request, higher amounts may be considered, especially in the event of a widespread weather disaster.
Full repayment is expected within three years, with monthly payments beginning six months after loan closing; upon request, alternative repayment schedules may be considered.

Applications can be submitted at any time. For more information, please contact Stephen Taranto at CISA ( or 413-665-7100, ext. 17) for help determining if an Emergency Farm Fund is the best option for your business.

Loan Application Review:
Loan applications are reviewed by CISA’s Emergency Farm Fund loan application review committee. Once approved, funds are disbursed after completion of a signed loan agreement and promissory note.

About CISA’s Emergency Farm Fund Loan Committee:
The Loan Review Committee includes members from CISA, the Franklin County CDC/Pioneer Valley Grows Investment Fund, Equity Trust, the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources and farmers.

Questions? Email or call 413-665-7100 ext. 17.

Climate Change and Farming Week

CISA’s Climate Change and Farming Week is a chance for CISA, farmers and allied organizations and individuals to host events that build awareness of and support for local food and farm businesses as they seek solutions to the many challenges of growing food in a warmer, wetter New England.

This is an annual event held in September, and new hosts are always welcome. Climate Week 2024 will be held September 15-22, 2024. For more information or to propose an event, please contact CISA’s Climate Program at or the Climate Program Coordinator, Stephen Taranto, at or 413-665-7100, ext. 17, or submit your event here

Climate Change & Farming Blog & Bulletin

CISA’s Climate Program shares a blog and bulletin of farmer-focused information, opportunities and news three times a year. Subscribe to the Climate Change and Farming Bulletin and CISA’s other online publications here.

Business Planning Assistance

Farm business planning in the age of climate change is an essential part of resiliency. Don’t hesitate to ask for climate adaptation support from the financial side of things as well. To get started, call a CISA staff member or send us a message through our Technical Assistance Request Form here and we’ll be in touch!

CISA's Climate Change and Farming YouTube Channel

CISA’s Climate Change and Farming YouTube Channel is full of how-to videos on topics ranging from soil health and management practices to grant proposal preparation guidelines. Take a look here, consider subscribing and sharing your own favorite how-to videos with us!

Find It Locally

Search CISA’s online guide to local farms, food, and more!

Find Local Food

For more information about CISA’s Climate Program, contact Stephen Taranto at or 413-665-7100, ext. 17.