2020 Annual Meeting Conservation Innovation Fair

Throughout the 2020 Annual Meeting, conservation innovation will be featured in the NACD Conservation Expo through Conservation Innovation Booths, educational breakout sessions and a half-day symposium.

How can we better integrate technologies across the public and private sectors to build stronger conservation planning tools for public employees, agronomists, other trusted advisors and farmers/ranchers themselves? Join the conversation at the Conservation Innovation Fair!

NACD invites all organizations and companies whose innovations help support conservation delivery to join us for an exciting Innovation Fair.

Conservation Innovation Fair Expo

In cooperation with the National Conservation Planning Partnership, the Conservation Expo will feature public and private sector innovations in a wide range of fields that focus on meeting private lands conservation needs.

All booth spaces are full for the Innovation Fair. Please visit the Conservation Expo to see the Innovator Booths.

A VIP Preview of the Innovation Fair Expo will take place from 2-4 pm (invitation only). The VIP Preview is sponsored by Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN.

Conservation Innovation Breakout Sessions

All Innovation Breakout Sessions will be held in Bronze 4 Room.

These sessions will engage innovators, conservation-minded producers and private lands conservation professionals in an ongoing dialogue about how to best meet 21st century production and conservation goals using new and improved technologies.

Monday, Feb. 10 from 2:30-3:30 P.M. – Innovation, Natural Resources and Ecosystem Services

This session will explore how new tools and strategies are being used to determine the values of ecosystem services on working lands. Topics covered include NASA-supported pilot satellite imagery to boost sustainability; building a market-based approach to promoting land stewardship through the Ecosystem Services Market Consortium; and using technologies that inform sustainability practices to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Presenters: Mike Komp – Conservation Technology Information Center; Bruce Knight – Ecosystem Services Market Consortium; Chris Fennig – MyFarms

Moderator: Tim Riley – National Conservation District Employees Association

Monday, Feb. 10 from 4:00-5:00 P.M. – Powering Innovation at the Landscape Scale

Presenters will discuss how to use today’s technologies to address conservation needs and achieve measurable stewardship goals on a landscape scale. Technologies discussed will include Truterra from Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN, a digital platform that supports farmer-led stewardship; and Field to Market’s calculator for supply-chain projects. This session will also provide an overview of Turkey Hill Dairy and the Clean Water Partnership’s work to protect the Chesapeake Bay.

Presenters: Jason Weller – Land O’Lakes; Lexi Clark – Field to Market; Andrea Nikolaus – Turkey Hill Clean Water Partnership; Jenna Mitchell – Turkey Hill Clean Water Partnership

Moderator: William Hodge – National Association of Resource Conservation and Development Councils

Tuesday, Feb. 11 from 1:30-3:00 P.M. – Field-Level Technology and Tools for the 21st Century

At the field level, new technology is supporting producers’ stewardship decisions. This presentation will cover NRCS’ CART and Conservation Desktop, two key tools to support conservation delivery and decision-making; the NRCS Highly Erodible Land Determination Tool; using publicly accessible tools to calculate how soil health practices improve productivity, profits and the environment; and targeted agricultural drone spraying for good stewardship practices.

Presenters: Aaron Lauster – NRCS; Chris Morse – NRCS; Marcie Dunn – NRCS; Aaron Ristow – American Farmland Trust; Michael Ott – Rantizo

Moderator: Astor Boozer – NRCS

Tuesday, Feb. 11 from 3:30-5:00 P.M. – Tying it All Together

This session will explore our collective conservation future and how existing and developing technology and tools will support decision-making and stewardship. Topics will include how new pieces fit into a 21st century conservation delivery system; OpenTEAM, a technology ecosystem that helps farmers improve production and ecosystem services; how the private and public sector can work together for watershed planning; how the USDA Agricultural Research Service can help America’s producers and conservation professionals; and insight into the NRCS Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) and Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP).

Presenters: Jimmy Bramblett – NRCS; Dorn Cox, producer and NACD Soil Health Champion; Doug Thomas – Houston Engineering; Dr. David Knaebel – Agricultural Research Service; Kari Cohen – NRCS

Moderator: Mike Brown – NASCA

Conservation Innovation Symposium

Conservation District Innovative Partnerships
Hosted by the National Conservation District Employees Association (NCDEA)
Moderator: Velynda Parker, NCDEA Board Member

This session will showcase the innovative partnerships between conservation districts, producers and other entities on software technology such as PTMApp, on-farm trials for soil health, soil moisture and the successive cash crop in the arid 8-12” rainfall zone as a method of cost-effective management options. Additionally, in conjunction with the NCPP, Conservation Desktop (CD) and CART will be presented from the vantage point of a district employee in a co-located field office and in non-co-located field offices. The session will include a Q & A with audience involvement. Panelists from selected state and conservation district partnerships will present their story and experiences.

  • Leslie Michel – Washington State Department of Agriculture
  • Matt Drewitz – Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources
  • Doug Thomas – Houston Engineering
  • Doug Bos – Rock County Land Management
  • Aaron Lauster – NRCS
  • Wade Troutman – Washington producer

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