Water

A winning partnership: Conservation districts and the NRCS Watershed Stewardship Program

Guest Column By Mark Gilbert, National Watershed Coalition While the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) may be better known for providing a financial safety net for farmers and ranchers, USDA also provides an actual safety net for our rural communities. The Watershed and Flood Prevention Program (Watershed Program) is a vital, but often overlooked, infrastructure…… Continue reading →

DOI review of designations under Antiquities Act underway

By Chris Heck What is the Antiquities Act?  The Act for the Preservation of American Antiquities was signed into law by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906. During his presidency, Roosevelt used the act 18 times. Seven of his original designations have been upgraded to “national park” or “national forest” by Congress, or in the case…… Continue reading →

The importance of Section 319 grants

By Eric Hansen Conservation districts draw on a variety of funding sources to protect and conserve our nation’s natural resources. Districts pull from farm bill conservation programs, state resource protection programs, and leverage private funds to achieve conservation objectives. They also can apply for funding through the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Section 319 program. Fast…… Continue reading →

NACD helps convene dialogue on emerging ecosystem markets

By Bill Berry Expert presenters at a recent National Network on Water Quality Trading spring dialogue (March 7-9) counted the many ways districts can be central to the success of water quality trading and other ecosystem services programs. NACD helped convene the gathering in Sacramento, California, along with the Willamette Partnership of Portland, Oregon, and Kieser…… Continue reading →

Districts a key windbreak partner across Great Plains

By Mike Beacom Conservation leaders from eight states gathered in Manhattan, Kansas, earlier this month for the Great Plains Windbreak Initiative, a three-day meeting designed to advance the “research, understanding, and use of windbreaks in the Great Plains.” [caption id="attachment_7770" align="alignright" width="640"] In additional to mitigating hazardous winds, these windbreaks in North Dakota save energy…… Continue reading →

New Mexico celebrates 15 years of collaborative conservation

By Jeff Burwell and Whitney Forman-Cook The New Mexico Association of Conservation Districts (NMACD) is celebrating 15 years of Restore New Mexico, a conservation effort that has made a measurable difference in rangeland and forest health in the state. NMACD and the other partners of the Bureau of Land Management's Restore New Mexico initiative started with an ambitious…… Continue reading →

‘Tis the season: Road salt applications catch the attention of Vermont district

By Whitney Forman-Cook The district manager of a Vermont conservation district spoke before the state's House Committee on Natural Resources recently on an important issue in the northern U.S. Road salt, Corrina Parnapy told lawmakers this winter, is making its way into American riparian, aquatic, and terrestrial ecosystems. Following a thaw or rain event, Parnapy testified, salt applied to…… Continue reading →

Chesapeake Bay district partners to accelerate conservation adoption

By Bill Tharpe and Jackie Koehn [caption id="attachment_7370" align="alignleft" width="363"] The Thomas Run project created three shallow water wetland developments and restored and forested approximately 12 acres of wetland, providing habitat for waterfowl and allowing landowners to lease their property for hunting rights.[/caption] The Harford Soil Conservation District in Maryland is working with a private sector…… Continue reading →

Districts among the many partners assisting 2017 LRP projects

By Mike Beacom Conservation districts are partners in half of the 2017 Joint Chiefs’ Landscape Restoration Partnership (LRP) projects announced in December. Through the program, the U.S. Forest Service and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) strive to work together to restore landscapes, reduce wildfire threats to communities and landowners, protect water quality, and enhance wildlife…… Continue reading →

How can the new Congress use CRA authority?

By Chris Heck WASHINGTON, Jan. 19, 2017 – Speculation is flying on whether the new Congress will use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to repeal several of the Obama administration’s more controversial regulations. These regulations include the Farmer Fair Practices or GIPSA rule, the SNAP retailers rule, the school lunch and breakfast program’s nutrition standards,…… Continue reading →

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