Broadband access is central to sustainability because connected technologies allow farmers to measure their inputs and outputs, creating opportunities for smarter, more efficient resource management. The adoption of precision agriculture technology has powerful benefits, both for farmers’ profitability and for their environmental impact. Precision agriculture, for example, optimizes fertilizer application through reduced overlap and variable rate of inputs. Precision agriculture has improved fertilizer placement efficiency by an estimated 7 percent and has the potential to further improve an additional 14 percent with more widespread adoption. This not only saves the farmer money on fertilizer; it also improves water and soil quality and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Similar benefits accrue in terms of herbicide, fossil fuel, and water use.
Most farmers plan on or are considering incorporating more data into day-to-day decisions, supporting their economic and environmental sustainability. However, they face internet-related barriers, including slow internet speeds, high costs, and unreliable service.
So how can we deliver the broadband that farmers need?
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