Conservation, Energy & Environment


USDA Evaluates Environmental Impacts of 2014 Farm Bill Implementation Choices for the Conservation Reserve Program

July 18, 2014

On Tuesday, July 15, 2014, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) released its Draft Supplemental Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (SPEIS) for Conservation Reserve Program (CRP).  The draft SPEIS seeks to assess the ways in which changes made to CRP in the 2014 Farm Bill will impact vegetation, wildlife, protected species, soils, surface […]

Conservation Stewardship Program Renewal Process Starting

July 11, 2014

Farmers and ranchers who enrolled in the the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) in 2010 can re-enroll their farms for another five years by submitting a renewal application to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resource Conservation (NRCS).  The window to apply to re-enroll extends from July 11 to September 12. CSP is a comprehensive working lands […]

House Subcommittee Votes to Curtail Environmental Protections

July 9, 2014

On Wednesday, July 9, the House Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee passed a bill to fund the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI), and related agencies in fiscal year (FY) 2015, which begins on October 1, 2014.  The bill cuts EPA funding by $717 million, or 9 percent, relative to […]

Final Week to Submit Pre-Proposals for the Regional Conservation Partnership Program

July 8, 2014

Monday, July 14 is the last day to submit pre-proposals to the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP).  Through RCPP, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) partners with producer associations or cooperatives, units of state or local governments, Indian tribes, water or irrigation districts or utilities, institutions of higher education, or […]

New Report Finds that Wetland and Grassland Destruction is Common

July 3, 2014

On Tuesday, July 1, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) published a new report on the status of wetland and grassland loss in the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of the upper Midwest and Plains States. Wetlands The report finds that between 1997 and 2009, net wetland acreage declined by roughly 6,200 acres per year.  […]

New Beginning Farmer and Conservation Crop Insurance Changes Announced

July 1, 2014

On Monday June 30, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) released an interim rule outlining seven actions it is taking to modify crop insurance inline with the requirements of the 2014 Farm Bill, to increase access for beginning farmers and encourage natural resource conservation.  NSAC supported the inclusion of several […]

Seasonal High Tunnels Support Conservation and New Farmers

June 27, 2014

New updates on how the Seasonal High Tunnel Initiative has benefited new farmers and encouraged additional conservation efforts.

Promoting Sustainable Agriculture Solutions to Climate Change Effects

June 25, 2014

On June 25, the one-year anniversary of the President’s Climate Action Plan, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) announced the availability of a document that articulates principles and recommendations for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to consider as it implements conservation programs under the 2014 Farm Bill that address the […]

Funding Available to Boost Declining Honey Bee Population

June 20, 2014

On Friday, June 20, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the availability of $8 million in Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) incentives for Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin farmers and ranchers who establish new habitats for declining honey bee populations on their existing CRP acres.  These five states are home for more […]

House Subcommittee Holds Hearing on Clean Water Act Agricultural Exemptions

June 20, 2014

On Thursday, June 19, the Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy, and Forestry of the House Agriculture Committee held a hearing entitled, “A Review of the Interpretive Rule regarding the applicability of Clean Water Act agricultural exemptions.” The interpretive rule was included in the joint U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps)  […]

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