Conservation, Energy & Environment

USDA Rural Energy Grant and Loan Applications Open

April 29, 2010

USDA’s Rural Development Agency has announced that it is taking applications for Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grants and guaranteed loans.  A total of $87 million is available in FY2010 for projects to develop and/or construct renewable energy systems and energy efficiency improvements. Applications for REAP grants and guaranteed loans must be received by […]

NRCS Funding for Farm Energy Audits and Plans

April 29, 2010

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced an initiative to use $2 million in FY2010 Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funding to help farmers and ranchers conserve energy and reduce energy costs. Farmers and ranchers may apply for the funding in the following 29 states: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Maine, […]

Groups Urge Ag Funding Fairness

April 26, 2010

More than 100 national, regional, state and local groups have signed on to a letter urging President Obama to pay for proposed increases in child nutrition and to settle long standing claims stemming from  systemic discrimination in USDA programs without cutting critical conservation programs. The letter circulated by the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, the Rural […]

Conservation Stewardship Program Update

April 23, 2010

This post provides some basic updates on the status of the nearly completed 2009 sign-up as well as the upcoming 2010 version of the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP). 2009 Sign-up Nearing Completion Despite sign-up coming late in the year and being rushed, some 21,000 farmers and ranchers applied to enroll 33 million acres in the […]

Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative Applications Open

April 23, 2010

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is taking applications for the Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative (CCPI) until May 27, 2010.  The full Request for Proposals can be found here. The CCPI allows NRCS to partner with eligible organizations to provide financial and technical assistance to owners and operators of agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands.  […]

Anti-CAFO Activist Wins Goldman Environmental Prize

April 20, 2010

NSAC offers heartfelt congratulations to Lynn Henning, a southern Michigan farmer who has been awarded the 2010 Goldman Environmental Prize for U.S. grassroots environmental activism.  The Prize is recognition of Lynn’s unstinting work in exposing the impacts of pollution from large-scale concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs), especially mega-dairies, in her southern Michigan community and across […]

Research Grants Drilldown: Conventional Breeding and Climate Adaptation

April 13, 2010

This is the third in a series of articles drilling down into some sections of the six Request for Applications (RFAs) recently released by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) for the 2010 Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).  Check out the second post about Integrated Projects on Local and Regional Food Systems.    […]

NRCS Agricultural Water Enhancement Program Projects Funding

April 2, 2010

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has announced that it is taking applications for Agricultural Water Enhancement Program (AWEP) projects until May 17, 2010.   AWEP was authorized in the 2008 Farm Bill to replace the Ground and Surface Water Conservation Program, a component of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).   AWEP expanded the […]

Can Bioenergy Production Be Sustainable?

April 1, 2010

The National Wildlife Federation has released a new policy paper, Growing a Green Energy Future: A Primer and Vision for Sustainable Biomass Energy, that concludes that the U.S. can do much more to improve the conservation and environmental performance of bioenergy production.  The paper lays out the changes needed in U.S. policy for bioenergy production […]

USDA Releases Request for Applications for AFRI Competitive Grants

March 26, 2010

This week, USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (formerly, the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service) released the long-anticipated 2010 Request for Applications (RFAs) for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).  Significantly overhauled and with more funding to award than ever, the AFRI RFAs define a substantive portion of USDA’s research agenda, […]