Conservation, Energy & Environment


New Guide Simplifies Federal Programs for Farmers

February 17, 2017

Which U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) agencies have programs that are tailored to meet the needs of diversified farming operations, organic growers, or beginning farmers? What resources are available for small- and mid-sized growers looking to reach expanding regional markets, and where can you find them? For most people, even many farmers and ranchers, the […]

Final Week to Apply for Comprehensive Conservation Support in 2017

January 30, 2017

  Farmers and ranchers seeking 2017 funding under the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) have five more days to submit their initial applications. CSP, which is the nation’s largest working lands conservation program, supports farmers and ranchers in their efforts to actively manage and expand conservation activities on their agricultural lands. The 2017 CSP sign-up period […]

How Sustainable Agriculture Advocates Can Take Action in 2017

January 24, 2017

With a new president and the 115th Congress recently sworn in, farmers and sustainable agriculture advocates around the country have been asking: What does this new Administration and Congress mean for agriculture and food policy? How can we most effectively advocate and continue to make change on the issues that we care about? Here at […]

$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 […]

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