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News Release

The Oakwood Lakes Watershed Project Announces Batching Date

Contact
Jeremy Sova, District Conservationist
(605) 692-8003, Ext. 3 | jeremy.sova@usda.gov

NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE, Huron, S.D., October 21, 2021 – The Oakwood Lakes Watershed Conservation Implementation Strategy (CIS) Project will soon be underway in the northwest corner of Brookings County, South Dakota, serving the community and improving land quality. This 3-year project is one of 17 selected in Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 and federally-funded through the NRCS conservation programs in the 2018 Farm Bill. The purpose of this project is to help producers install a number of practices that will result in the reduction of sediment, nutrients, and pesticides entering surface waters within the watershed and will be implemented by the Brookings Conservation District (CD) and East Dakota Water Development District (EDWDD) in collaboration with farmers, ranchers and landowners. Farmers, ranchers, and landowners within the project area are eligible to apply for financial assistance. While applications are accepted year-round, the batching date for applications is December 3, 2021.

The NRCS’ conservation specialists and partners are coordinating these projects throughout the state. Through collectively focusing expertise and resources on the highest priority resource concerns in the highest priority areas, CIS projects can yield the most impressive returns. Collaborative funding and support from other agencies and groups create a coordinated community effort and focus on mutual issues of concern. The Oakwood Lakes Watershed CIS Project partners with Brookings CD and EDWDD to directly benefit water quality and soil loss. Project sponsors identified excess nutrients, sediment, and pesticides as resource concerns and developed this CIS project to address the situation. “By having agricultural producers voluntarily implement practices that target excess nutrients, sediment, and pesticides in surface waters, we hope to see a verifiable reduction of those three resource concerns in the watershed by the end of the project. The ultimate goal is cleaner water for everyone in the watershed,” says Jeremy Sova, District Conservationist, Brookings Field Office.

To apply to be a part of this project, find and contact your local NRCS Service Center at www.bit.ly/contactnrcssd, or contact Jeremy Sova, District Conservationist, at jeremy.sova@usda.gov or (605) 692-8003, Ext. 3. For more information on the CIS in South Dakota, or if you have ideas for a project, visit www.bit.ly/SDNRCS-CIS, or contact Jeff Vander Wilt, Assistant State Conservationist for Programs, at jeffrey.vanderwilt@usda.gov or (605) 352-1226.

The USDA’s Service Centers are open for business. Farmers, ranchers, and landowners can call or e-mail to make in-person appointments at USDA Service Centers across the country. Find and contact your local NRCS Service Center at www.bit.ly/contactnrcssd.

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