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Conservation Innovation Grants

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CIG at a Glance

  • Authorized by: 2002 Farm Bill
  • First Grants Awarded: 2004
  • Annual Funding average: $20 Million
  • Total Grants Awarded since 2004 (national component): 679
  • Total CIG Funding since 2004: $263 Million

Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) are competitive grants that stimulate the development and adoption of innovative approaches and technologies for conservation on agricultural lands. CIG uses Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds to award competitive grants to non-Federal governmental or nongovernmental organizations, American Indian Tribes, or individuals. Producers involved in CIG funded projects must be EQIP eligible.

Through CIG, NRCS partners with public and private entities to accelerate technology transfer and adopt promising technologies. These new technologies and approaches address some of the Nation's most pressing natural resources concerns. CIG benefits agricultural producers by providing more options for environmental enhancement and compliance with Federal, State, and local regulations.  

2017 CIG Funding Opportunity


NRCS will invest $25 million for new national CIG projects in fiscal year 2017. The focus areas this year are conservation finance; data analytics for natural resources; pay-for-success models to stimulate conservation adoption; precision conservation; water management technologies and approaches; and benefitting historically underserved farmers, ranchers and private forest landowners.

Up to $2 million of this year’s CIG funding has been set aside for projects that benefit historically underserved and military veteran farmers and ranchers, beginning farmers and ranchers and those with limited resources and organizations that include or support them.

The 2017 funding application period is now closed.  American Indian tribes, state and local units of government, non-governmental organizations and individuals are eligible to submit applications. Project proposals must be submitted electronically through and a pdf copy must be e-mailed to

2017 Announcement for Program Funding (DOCX version)

CIG Components

National Competition
A CIG funding notice is announced each year. Funds for single- or multi-year projects, not to exceed three years, will be awarded through a nationwide competitive grants process. Projects may be watershed-based, regional, multi-state or nationwide in scope. The natural resource concerns eligible for funding through CIG will be identified in the funding announcement and may change annually to focus on new and emerging, high priority natural resource concerns.

State Competition

The CIG state component emphasizes projects that benefit a limited geographical area. Participating states will announce their funding availability for CIG competitions through their state NRCS offices. For additional information about State CIG competitions, please contact your State NRCS office or search for the latest postings here.

Applicants Button Image Grantees Button Image Success Stories Image Project Search tool Image

Addtional Resources SubheaderImage

2015 CIG Awards (PDF, 135 KB)
CIG Fact Sheet (PDF, 281 KB)
CIG Congressional Report(PDF, 916 KB)
Top 10 CIG Stories (PDF, 1.3 MB)

Program Contact
Melleny Cotton, Program Analyst (202) 720-7412