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Conservation Innovation Grants Final Reports

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) support the development and testing of promising new conservation technologies and approaches, with the goal of making them available for use as quickly as possible by conservation-minded farmers and ranchers, nationwide.

Public and private entities and individuals are eligible to apply and compete for a CIG. Every CIG recipient agrees to submit a final report to NRCS that describes the performance and results of the grant project. NRCS uses these reports to choose which technologies and approaches will be integrated into the agency’s policies, procedures, and guidelines.

The final reports posted below are listed in alphabetical order by subject. This list will be updated as additional reports are evaluated by the agency’s subject-matter experts.

The documents below require Acrobat Acrobat Reader.

Air Resources

Washington State University
•    Pathogen Reduction in a Community Based Anaerobic Digester (PDF, 11.5 MB)

Colorado State University/ Agricultural Experimental Station
•    On-Farm Evaluation and Demonstration of Ammonia Reduction Best Management Practices for Feedlots and Dairies (PDF, 2.14 MB)

Pennsylvania State University
•    Controlling Odor and Nutrient Losses to Surface Runoff Groundwater and Air with New and Conventional Manure Injection Technologies on No-Till and Sod Soils (PDF, 133 KB)

California Association of Resource Conservation Districts
•    MISTING-A Viable Conservation Management Practice for Reducing PM10 Generated by Disking (PDF, 2.11 MB)

California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance
•    California Code of Sustainable Winegrowing Practices – Innovations for Air and Water Quality (PDF, 387 KB)

Michigan State University
•    Development of a National Air Quality Site Assessment Tool (NAQSAT) (PDF, 617 KB)

Environmental Credit Corp
•    Providing Carbon Credit Revenue for the Adoption of Lagoon Covers (PDF, 342 KB)

United Egg Producers
•    Feeding DDGS and Laying Hens to Demonstrate Economically Viable Reductions in Ammonia Emissions (PDF, 3.88 MB)


Cayuga Soil and Water Conservation District
•    Cayuga County Regional Digester Facility (PDF, 4.2 MB)

Giziibii Resource Conservation & Development Association
•    Power from the Prairie-Demonstration and Evaluation of Burning Agricultural Waste Streams in a Small-Scale Gasifier (PDF, 113 KB)

Coaltec Energy USA, Inc
•    Gasification of Poultry Litter to Produce Bio-Energy for Heat Forest (PDF, 2.2 MB)

Forest Restoration Partnership
•    Oregon Aspen Project (PDF, 3.4 MB)

The Pennsylvania Environmental Council
•    Excess Manures for Mine Reclamation and Biofuel Production (PDF, 2.25 MB)

Albert Wayne Jones
•    Poultry Manure:  The New Frontier for Anaerobic Digestion (PDF, 1.28 MB)

South Dakota State University
•    Precision Conservation Using Multiple Cellulosic Feedstocks (PDF, 1.06 MB)

Hansen Energy and Environmental
•    Production of Synthetic Diesel from Animal Manure and Food Waste (PDF, 80 KB)


Hedgeapple Biotech
•    Evaluation of Maclura Pomifera for fuels, chemicals and carbon sequestration (PDF, 427 KB)

The Blackfoot Challenge
•    Community Based Fire Management Innovation for Private Lands (PDF, 764 KB)

Dovetail Partners, Inc
•    Forest Certification for Family Forests (PDF, 811 KB)

The Forest Guild
•     Promoting Adoption of Innovative Conservation Practices for Sustainable Forest Biomass Harvesting (PDF, 123 KB)

      o    Forest Retention and Harvesting Guidelines for the Northeast (PDF, 1.14 MB)
      o    Tri-fold Version of Retention Guidelines (PDF, 1.65 MB)
      o    Additional materials available at
Leaving NRCS


World Wildlife Fund
•    A Market-Based Program for Environmental Services on South Florida Ranchlands (PDF, 3.3 MB)

West Virginia University
•    Utilization and Management of Invasive Plants in Pastures Using Bio-Control Agents (PDF, 484 KB)

Missouri Department of Conservation
•    Evaluation of a Grazing System for Maintaining Grassland Integrity and Improving Upland Bird Habitat (PDF, 1.3 MB)

Wildlife Habitat Federation
•    Demonstrate the Conservation and Producer-Based Benefits of Marketing Restored Grasslands for Seed (PDF, 364 KB)

Alabama Beef Council
•    Introducing Clovers in Grazing Systems in Coastal Plain Regions of the South (PDF, 668 KB)

University of Georgia
•   Extracting Energy From Poultry Waste and Fruit and Vegetable Waste Through Anaerobic Digestion Technology (PDF, 2.60 MB)

Heifer Project International, Inc.
•   Enhancement of Resource Management on Livestock Operations of Limited Resource Farmers Through Training on Prescribed Grazing, Animal Habitat and Well-Being (PDF, 38 KB)


University of Georgia
•    Using Environmental Management Systems to Enhance Farmer Environmental Awareness (PDF, 244 KB)

Western United Dairymen
•    Water Balance Approach for Seepage Measurements from Liquid Dairy Manure Storage Ponds (PDF, 84 KB)
        o    Fact Sheet (PDF, 125 KB)
        o    Technical Field Guide (PDF, 8.95 MB)

The Wetlands Initiative
•    MRBI Big Bureau Creek Targeted Subwatershed Project: Producer Communication & Outreach Program (PDF, 9.10 MB)

Agriculture & Land-Based Training Association

•    Advancing Conservation Innovation among Beginning and Socially Disadvantaged Farmers (PDF, 191 KB)
•    Additional materials available at

Leaving NRCS


National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
•    2008 National Agreement, Preliminary Project Results Summary (PDF, 7.56 MB)
     •    Conservation Technology Information Center: Transitioning to No-Till Cover Crops – IN, OH (PDF, 380 KB)
     •    Iowa Soybean Association: Cooperative Conservation for Watershed Health – IA (PDF, 100 KB)
     •    Tarleton State University: Water Quality Trading – MD (PDF, 78 KB)
     •    University of Missouri: Nitrogen Loss Reduction in Crops – MO (PDF, 53 KB)
     •    Cornell University: Subsurface Drainage Water Management – NY (PDF, 1.33 MB)
     •    Oklahoma State University: Conservation and Integrated Pest Management – OK (PDF, 125 KB)
     •    University of Wisconsin – Madison: Optimizing Manure Nutrient Utilization –WI (PDF, 556 KB)
     •    West Virginia University Research Corporation: Precision Agriculture on Grasslands – WV (PDF, 85 KB)
•    2008 Chesapeake Bay Agreement, Preliminary Project Results Summary (PDF, 1.22 MB)
     •    Caroline County Soil Conservation District: Managing Poultry-Source Nutrient Delivery – MD (PDF, 99 KB)
     •    Trout Unlimited, Inc: Phosphorus Control in Farm Waste Management – PA (PDF, 71 KB)
     •    Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Inc: Chesapeake Nutrient Neutral Fund (PDF, 169 KB)
     •     American Farmland Trust: Chesapeake Water Quality Initiative – MD, PA, VA (PDF, 546 KB)
     •    University of Delaware: Nitrogen Management During Corn Production (PDF, 375 KB)

Soil Resource

The Curators of the University of Missouri
•    Demonstration of Farm Profitability Utilizing Management Techniques that Promote Soil and Water Conservation Practices and Improve Pastures (PDF, 131 KB)

Environmental Defense Fund
•    Creating and Quantifying Carbon Credits from Voluntary Practices on Rice Farms in the Sacramento Valley (PDF, 647 KB)

Chicago Climate Exchange
•    Carbon Credit Generation Program (PDF, 214 KB)

Three Rivers Resource Conservation and Development
•    Productive Conservation on Working Lands (PDF, 2.5 MB)

Winrock International
•    Pilot-testing Performance-based Incentives for Agricultural Pollution Control (PDF, 1 MB)

California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance
•    Breaking Through Adoption Barriers-Market-Based Conservation Approaches to Drive the Adoption of Conservation Practices (PDF, 750 KB)

•    The Stewardship Index for Specialty Crops (PDF, 2.7 MB)

Rodale Institute
•    No-Till Plus (PDF, 56 KB)

Water Quality

Mifflin County Conservation District
•    Environmentally Sensitive Maintenance on Agricultural Roads to Reduce Nutrient and Sediment Pollution in the Kishacoqillas Watershed (PDF, 9.4 MB)

Iowa Soybean Association
•    Outcomes-Based Nitrogen Efficiency Project for Corn Production (PDF, 2.34 MB)

The Nature Conservancy
•    Quantitative Comparison of the Effects of Control Drainage versus Constructed Wetlands on Water Quality at a Watershed Scale (PDF, 1.77 MB)
•    Murphy Creek Two-Stage Ditch (PDF, 5.48 MB)

University of Kentucky
•    Demonstration of Enhanced Technologies for Land Application of Animal Nutrient Sources in Sensitive Watersheds (PDF, 5.27 MB)

West Virginia University
•    WV Potomac Nutrient Credit Bank and Trade Program (PDF, 990 KB)

Oregon State University
•    Landowner Tool for Quantifying Multiple Environmental Services of Riparian Vegetation Buffers for Use in Water Quality Trading (PDF, 378 KB)

North Carolina State University
•    Pilot Project for Value-Added Product Development from Solid Waste Generated on Swine Farms (PDF, 309 KB)
•    Demonstrating and Supporting Adoption of Innovative Conservation Practices on Outdoor Hog Production Systems in North Carolina (PDF, 5.11 MB)

Virginia Tech
•    Precision Feeding to Reduce Nutrient Losses from Virginia Dairy Farms (PDF, 262 KB)

National Center for Appropriate Technology
•    Sustainable American Cotton Project-Pesticide Reduction (PDF, 4.38 MB)

Maryland Department of Agriculture
•    Demonstration of Alternative Containment Structures for Poultry Litter Stockpiling (PDF, 19 KB)

Conservation Technology Information Center
•    Customized Training on Water Quality Trading (PDF, 288 KB)

Washington State University
•    Phosphorous and Solids Removal from Anaerobic Digestion Effluent Through Electrochemical Technology (PDF, 1.93 MB)

University of Delaware
•    Demonstration of a Complete Approach to Manure Management-Improving Nutrient Use and Creating Value-Added Products for Dairy Farmers (PDF, 7.40 MB)

Albany State University
•    Technology-Based Benchmarking for Efficient Water Use and Conservation in Southwest Georgia Implementing the Farmer Portal (PDF, 4.28 MB)

North Carolina Department of Environmental & Natural Resources-Division of Soil & Water Conservation
•    Innovative Conservation Practices for Aquaculture Operations (PDF, 1.03 MB)
•    Innovative Mortality Management Tools for Animal Agriculture Industries (PDF, 420 KB)

Red Tomato
•    Market Incentives for Conservation Practices by Northeast Tree Fruit Growers (PDF, 5.15 MB)

Pennsylvania State University
•    Field Tests on Systems Approaches for Retooling Mid-Atlantic Orchards with Innovative Conservation Technologies (PDF, 254 KB)

IPM Institute of North America, Inc
•    Comprehensive Pesticide Environmental Assessment Tool for US Agriculture (PDF, 705 KB)

The Curators of the University of Missouri
•    Demonstration of Innovative Technology for Optimizing Nitrogen Application on Corn (PDF, 818 KB)

Arkansas Natural Resources Commission
•    Quantification of Impacts of On-Farm Capture, Storage, and Re-use of Surface Water on Water Quantity and Water Quality (PDF, 1.97 MB)

California Dairy Campaign
•    Economic and Environmental Demonstration and Evaluation of Using Polymers to Flocculate and Precipitate Out Fine Solids in Dairy Waste Water (PDF, 750 KB)

Pennsylvania Environmental Council
•    Use of Excess Manures for Mine Reclamation and Biofuel Production (PDF, 2.50 MB)

Water Quantity

El Dorado Irrigation District
•    Scheduling Irrigation for Commercial Agricultural Growers Using Permanently Placed Soil Moisture Sensor (PDF, 645 KB)

Nebraska Corn Board
•    Demonstration Validation of a Dynamic Real-Time Decision Support System for Irrigation Management (PDF, 1.64 MB)

Oregon State University
•    Demonstration and Evaluation of an Integrated Organic Mulching and Drip Irrigation System for Orchard Crops (PDF, 835 KB)

Chesapeake Bay Foundation
•    Precision Dairy Feeding to Reduce Nutrient Pollution in Pennsylvania’s Waters and the Chesapeake Bay (PDF, 351 KB)


Pit Resource Conservation District
•    Cooperative Sagebrush Steppe Restoration Initiative-Implementation (PDF, 2.35 MB)

Chesapeake Bay Natives
•    Development of Native Seed as an Alternative Crop for Soil Conservation in Maryland (PDF, 25.3 MB)

Bat Conservation International
•    Roost and Water Conservation for Pollinating and Insect Eating Bats (PDF, 2.31 MB)