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News Release

Conservation Innovation Grant Pre-Proposals Due January 31, 2012

Wade Biddix
(804) 287-1675


Richmond, January 5, 2012 – USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is seeking proposals for 2012 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) that test and prove original approaches to conserving America’s private lands. Project pre-proposals must be submitted by January 31, 2012 to be eligible for approximately $15 million in funding. Chesapeake Bay Watershed project funding will be announced separately.)

“Virginia is proud to encourage the advancement of innovative conservation methods to benefit producers, the public and the economy for years to come,” said NRCS State Conservationist Jack Bricker. “Last year, $1.8 million in CIG funding went to single and multi-state projects benefitting the Commonwealth. This year’s CIG will focus on nutrient management, energy conservation, soil health, wildlife, and technology transfer opportunities.”

NRCS is especially interested in large-scale projects that effectively demonstrate the impacts of suites of conservation practices on water quality and soil health. Other areas of interest include:  nutrient recovery by crops, renewable energy systems for farm use, phosphorous index refinements, producer tools for improving wildlife habitat, and assessments of technology transfer potential for completed CIG projects.

Eligible applicants include private individuals, federally recognized Indian Tribes, State or local governments or non-governmental organizations. Proposed projects/activities must encompass the development and assessment, evaluation and implementation of either:

  • Conservation adoption approaches or incentive systems (including market-based systems)

  • Promising conservation technologies, practices, systems, procedures or activities

Projects must involve landowners who meet eligibility requirements for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program. CIG funds will be awarded through a competitive grants process. At least 50 percent of the total project cost must come from non-Federal matching funds, including cash and in-kind contributions provided by the grant recipient. To apply electronically, visit To view the complete Announcement of Program Funding, visit

For more information about NRCS conservation programs, visit or visit your local USDA service center.