Conservation, Energy & Environment

Rural Community-based Research Receives $14 Million in Funding

February 27, 2015

Earlier this week, the USDA announced $14 million in funding towards research projects aimed at strengthening rural economies. The awards encompass a wide variety of issues affecting rural communities and small and medium-sized farms including food safety, conservation, marketplace economics, local food systems, and pollinator health. The funding comes from the Agricultural Economics and Rural Communities […]

Release: Conservation Stewardship Program Sign-Up Extended to March 13

February 23, 2015

Washington, DC February 23, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture has extended the sign-up period for the 2015 edition of the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) – the federal farm bill’s largest working lands conservation program. Farmers and ranchers now have two additional weeks – until March 13 – to complete the initial application form. Coinciding […]

NSAC Policy Director and Former NRCS Chief Pen Guest Blog for AGree

February 20, 2015

On February 18, NSAC Policy Director Ferd Hoefner and former NRCS Chief Bruce Knight published the following blog on AGree’s website. The blog explores the intersection of crop insurance and conservation practices that could improve the health of the land while also increasing yields. The blog was posted in conjunction with the release of […]

A Closer Look at the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program in 2014

February 12, 2015

In early September of 2014, USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced that it had awarded $328 million for 380 wetland, grassland, and farmland conservation easements covering 129,000 acres in the first year of the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). At that time, NRCS did not have additional information on the types of easements that […]

Farm and Conservation Organizations Speak Out on Conservation Program Rules

February 11, 2015

Sixty farm and conservation organizations including many NSAC member and partner organizations joined in a letter to the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) recommending several changes to the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) to increase EQIP’s ability to improve sustainability, optimize the program’s cost-effectiveness, better serve organic farmers, and support a shift toward more […]

Release: New Free Tools Help Farmers, Ranchers Apply for Conservation Stewardship Program Before February 27 Deadline

February 11, 2015

Washington, DC February 11, 2015 – With a February 27 deadline approaching, farmers and ranchers have only two weeks left to apply to enroll in the federal Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) for 2015.   The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) has released two free resources to help farmers and ranchers nationwide learn how the program works […]

Attack on WOTUS Continues

February 6, 2015

In the latest congressional attack on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulation of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS), the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works and the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure held a two-part joint hearing on the Impacts of the Proposed Waters of the United States Rule on State […]

Senate Bill Would Cap Crop Insurance Subsidies

February 4, 2015

On Tuesday February 3, Senators Shaheen and Toomey introduced legislation to cap crop insurance subsidies at $50,000 per entity. According to the Congressional Budget Office, this payment limit would save the federal government $2.2 billion over 10 years while impacting only 2.5 percent of producers. Currently, the federal government subsidizes, on average, 62 percent of […]

Got CSP Questions? We’ve Got Answers!

February 3, 2015

The deadline for farmers and ranchers to sign-up for CSP has been extended by USDA until March 13.

What Does the President’s 2016 Budget Mean for Sustainable Agriculture?

February 2, 2015

There are some positive signs in the budget request for sustainable food and agriculture priorities, but also some very major disappointments.

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