USDA NRCS awards grants for conservation tech and research
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is investing $15.7 million through grants to 47 entities that will help develop and demonstrate cutting-edge ideas to accelerate innovation in private lands conservation.
Recipients of Conservation Innovation Grants will demonstrate innovative approaches to improve soil health, air and water quality, conserve energy, and enhance wildlife habitat in balance with productive agricultural systems.
“Conservation Innovation Grants activate creativity and problem-solving to benefit conservation-minded farmers and ranchers,” said Joyce Swartzendruber, NRCS state conservationist for Montana. “These grants are critical in sparking new ideas and techniques for conservation on private lands and strengthening rural communities.”
Of the 47 grants announced today include, two are in Montana:
Montana State University: Received $50,000 to demonstrate and quantify the influences of incentive-based rest rotation grazing on food insects of sage-grouse, rangeland pollinators and vectors of West Nile virus.
University of Montana: Received $59,997 to enhance ecological site development through technology transfer and producer input.
A full list of recipients is available on the NRCS website: http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/programs/financial/cig/.
The grants are funded through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program. Grantees must work with producers and forestland owners to develop and demonstrate new technologies and approaches. At least 50 percent of the total cost of CIG projects must come from non-federal matching funds, including cash and in-kind contributions provided by the grant recipient.