Conservation, Energy & Environment


$252 Million for Conservation Partnerships in FY 2018

January 17, 2017

Last month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the results of the fiscal year (FY) 2017 competition for conservation project funding through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). As we reported in a previous post, USDA’s investment of $225 million was met with a non-federal investment of $500 million from a variety of local […]

New Conservation Initiative Will Combat Dead Zones and Help Keep Waterways Healthy

January 13, 2017

Our rivers, lakes, and oceans are teeming with life, and just like the human body they require oxygen to sustain that life and stay healthy. Many waterways in the U.S., however, suffer from hypoxia – a condition in which oxygen levels are depleted to such a degree that fish and other wildlife are stressed or […]

Cover Crops and CAFOs: An Analysis of 2016 EQIP Spending

January 12, 2017

The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) awarded more than $1 billion in financial assistance (FA) to American farmers and ranchers in fiscal year (FY) 2016. These funds are provided through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and offer financial cost-share and technical assistance to help growers implement conservation practices on working […]

CRP Land Transfer Option Provides Opportunity for Beginning Farmers and Ranchers

January 10, 2017

In a 2011 survey by National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) member organization, National Young Farmers Coalition, access to land was ranked as the biggest challenge by 68% of responding farmers. With the average age of American farmers steadily rising, supporting the cultivation and success of our next generation of growers must be prioritized. The U.S. […]

NSAC’s Sweet 16: Top Wins for Sustainable Agriculture in 2016

December 28, 2016

If some years are rollercoasters, 2016 was more like the tilt-a-whirl – a lot of effort spent to turn just slightly in one direction or another, much spinning in circles, and a headache at the end for your trouble. Despite all the stop and starts, however, the sustainable agriculture community came out of the last […]

New Conservation Projects Take Root with $725 Million Public-Private Investment

December 22, 2016

In response to a 2014 Farm Bill provision, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has been attempting to demonstrate the power of well-designed public-private partnerships to maximize the impact of federal conservation programs. Since the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) began in 2014, USDA partners have invested over $2 billion in conservation projects across the […]

Unified Support for Conservation as Good Farming Practice Needed at USDA

December 16, 2016

Every farmer with crop insurance knows they need to comply with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Good Farming Practices (GFP) standard in order to maintain their coverage. Under guidelines established by USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA), farmers must undertake all the “generally recognized practices” that will give their crops the best chance to reach […]

RELEASE: Expanding Opportunities to Participate in CCRP Will Enhance Agricultural Conservation Efforts

December 7, 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Reana Kovalcik, 202-547-5754, RKovalcik@sustainableagriculture.net Greg Fogel, 202-547-5754, GFogel@sustainableagriculture.net Expanding Opportunities to Participate in CCRP Will Enhance Agricultural Conservation Efforts Washington, DC, December 7, 2016 – The new rental rate cap for continuous CRP (CCRP) practices is a great example of USDA thinking creatively about how to improve conservation opportunities while also responding […]

USDA Grasslands Initiative Expanding in States with Highest Losses

December 6, 2016

  At the end of just its second sign up period, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) Grasslands Initiative has enrolled over 600,000 acres of vulnerable grazing land across the country. Strong support for the Grasslands Initiative so early on is a positive sign, but high variability in participation amongst the […]

USDA Publishes New Resource to Help Farmers Adapt to Climate Change

December 2, 2016

Farming is an inherently risky business. On top of daily weather events, market fluctuations, land access, taxes, and expenses, the stress of climate change exacerbates these problems and serves to make agriculture even less predictable. Farmers and ranchers all over the United States are already experiencing the effects of climate change and severe weather events, […]

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