USDA Funds Conservation Innovation with $14.6 Million Investment in New Tools, Technology Development
Saint Paul, Minn., October 30, 2020 – USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is awarding more than $14.6 million in grants across the country to support the development of innovative systems, tools, and technologies for production and conservation on agricultural lands. More than $2.5 million is awarded to projects in Minnesota. Funds are provided through the Conservation Innovation Grants program, which awards grants to organizations, universities, and others that are developing innovations to support farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners.
The 2020 funding pool focused on five priority areas: air quality, water quality, water reuse, energy conservation, and wildlife habitat. In Minnesota, all three projects support clean air and water though different strategies. From farming small grains to using microbial electrochemical systems to bioreactors and saturated buffers, projects in Minnesota are finding innovative ways to protect our air and water for the benefit of all.
This USDA investment has generated more than $15.3 million in partner matching funds, resulting in almost $30 million for conservation innovation. Authorized in the 2002 Farm Bill, the CIG program has awarded nearly $300 million to-date.
“The world’s population is increasing, but available agricultural land is decreasing,” said Troy Daniell, NRCS Minnesota State Conservationist “Through science and innovation, we can help farmers improve the health of their operations and productivity on their lands while protecting the natural resources we all depend on. The new systems, tools, and technologies being developed through CIG are helping us ensure the longevity of American agriculture.”
NRCS selected 24 projects across the nation for the 2020 CIG awards. For a full list of projects and descriptions and more information about CIG visit the CIG website.