USDA Invests $15 Million in Innovative Projects for Climate-Smart Agriculture, Urban Ag and Invasive Species
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it will invest $15 million this year for the Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) Classic program. Through CIG, grantees work to address our nation's water quality, water quantity, air quality, soil health and wildlife habitat challenges.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 12, 2022
Champaign, IL — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it will invest $15 million this year for the Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) Classic program. Through CIG, grantees work to address our nation's water quality, water quantity, air quality, soil health and wildlife habitat challenges, all while supporting agricultural production. This year’s funding priorities are climate-smart agriculture, addressing invasive species and conservation in urban agricultural systems.
“The challenges that farmers and ranchers face require innovative solutions to support their continued ability to produce the food and fiber we all depend on,” said Ivan Dozier, Illinois State Conservationist. “Invasive species are a continual problem and weather extremes impact agriculture. At the same time, we are seeing opportunities for growth. Urban farming has increased, along with an interest in local foods and resilient food systems. We’re eager to help Illinois farmers address these challenges and opportunities, and science and innovation will help get us there.”
For the fiscal 2022 award process, at least 10% of the total funds available are set aside for proposals that entirely benefit historically underserved (HU) producers. This HU set-aside will ensure that equity is incorporated in the planning and delivery of CIG projects to align with NRCS’s Justice 40 goals. HU applicants can also waive the non-Federal match requirements.
Applications are being accepted now through October 11, 2022. Private entities whose primary business is related to agriculture, nongovernmental organizations with experience working with agricultural producers and non-federal government agencies are eligible to apply. For more information and experience working with agricultural producers and non-federal government agencies are eligible to apply. For more information and to apply, visit grants.gov.
About CIG - The national CIG program has two parts: CIG Classic and CIG On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials. Through CIG Classic, grantees develop new tools, technologies and strategies to support next-generation conservation efforts on working lands and develop market-based solutions to resource challenges. CIG On-Farm Trials support more widespread adoption and evaluation of innovative conservation approaches in partnership with agricultural producers. Incentive payments are provided to producers to offset the risk of implementing innovative approaches. Last month, USDA announced $25 million in funding for CIG On-Farm Trials.
For more information about the Conservation Innovation Grants program, visit the Illinois CIG website.