Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Professor Shanna Rose


Crop subsidies and crop insurance saved the agricultural sector during the Great Depression, but once the crisis was resolved, these policies persisted and resulted in perverse incentives as farming in the US changed over time. Today, crop subsidies and insurance favor large, monoculture farms that are harmful to the environment and human health. Monoculture farms both release greenhouse gas emissions which contribute to climate change and monocultures are the most vulnerable type of farm to the impacts of climate change. As a result, crop subsidies and insurance, which prop up these farming practices, must be reformed to both mitigate climate change and help agriculture adapt to it. Crop subsidies and insurance have not been substantively reformed due to the outsized influence of crop-specific lobbying groups and the comparatively low interest of the general public. The reforms recommended in this paper seek to create an agriculture sector that emits fewer greenhouse gases and can continue to provide food for a growing population. These reforms should be considered in negotiations for the 2023 Farm Bill.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.