NACD President Lee McDaniel and NRCS Chief Jason Weller met in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on July 17, 2016, to award $2 million in grants for urban agriculture conservation to 42 districts across 25 states.
President McDaniel said the following in his address, available here:
“NACD and the conservation districts we represent work on a scale that no other conservation organization or coalition does. Our work touches more acreage – and more people – than other any other conservation NGO. That’s fact.
Having the reach that we have, and the capacity we hold, to put conservation on the ground all across the United States is simply unprecedented.
Now, this means we have an awesome responsibility. And I know you all feel that responsibility to conservation; to doing the right thing when it comes to managing our natural resources.
It also means we have an opportunity. We have the reach we need to engage the 98 percent of folks who don’t necessarily produce our fuel, fiber, and food, but still can make an enormous difference on the landscape. We can work with these folks. We can provide them with the technical assistance they need to build and manage a community garden or an urban farm. The tools they need to better manage stormwater runoff, to reduce nutrient runoff from their flower beds and lawns, to improve water retention and build organic matter in their soils. Don’t think for a second that because these practices are being implemented on a quarter acre at a time, that added up across the 98 percent, won’t or can’t make all the difference in the world.
Conservation districts don’t just work with farmers and ranchers. We do a fantastic job of providing technical assistance and resources to these stakeholders, and we will continue to find and leverage resources for agriculture, ranching, and forest landowners.
The change will come in a twist of the aperture. NACD is broadening its base – broadening the base of support for conservation in this country. We are going to reward, support, and encourage conservation implemented on every landscape.
Today, in partnership with NRCS, NACD is tapping into the urban conservation contingent. After years of hard work and anticipation, we are pleased to announce that $2 million in grants for technical assistance will be awarded to 42 conservation districts across 25 states. These 42 districts are located in urban areas – many of which are considered food deserts. You can see on the map where these districts fall.”
The 42 urban conservation projects selected for the 2016 funding cycle were, by state: Alaska’s Fairbanks Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD); Alabama’s Jefferson County SWCD; Arkansas’ Perry County SWCD; California’s Resource Conservation District (RCD) of Greater San Diego County and Riverside-Corona RCD; Colorado’s Jefferson County Conservation District (CD); Connecticut’s Eastern Connecticut CD and Connecticut River Coastal CD; Florida’s Hillsborough SWCD and Leon SWCD; Georgia’s Flint River SWCD and Oconee River SWCD; Indiana’s Hamilton County SWCD and Marion SWCD; Kentucky’s Jefferson County SWCD; Maine’s Cumberland County SWCD; Michigan’s Kent County CD; Minnesota’s Ramsey CD; Missouri’s Boone County SWCD and Greene County SWCD; North Carolina’s Durham County SWCD and Wake SWCD; New Hampshire’s Hillsborough County CD; New Jersey’s Hudson-Essex-Passic SCD; New Mexico’s Valencia SWCD; Nevada’s CD of Southern Nevada; New York’s New York City SWCD; Ohio’s Cuyahoga SWCD, Lucas SWCD, and Muskingum SWCD; Pennsylvania’s Allegheny County CD, Blair CD, Lycoming County CD, and Montgomery County CD; South Carolina’s Greenville County SWCD; Virginia’s Henricopolis SWCD and New River SWCD; and Washington’s Clark CD, King CD, Lincoln County CD, Pierce CD, and Spokane CD.
To access NACD’s full press release on the funding announcement, click here.