Funding for Conservation Innovation and Agricultural Lands and Wetlands by Caroline Minasian Mar 17, 2020 Water News The National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is offering funding for 2020 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) and Conservation Easement for Agricultural Lands and Wetlands. The CIG applications are due May 8 and the Agricultural Lands and Wetlands on April 10. The CIG aims to spur the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies. Eligible projects for California benefit a limited geographical area so that funds can target innovative individual producers and smaller organizations. State and local government entities, tribal entities, non-governmental organizations and individuals are all eligible to apply. Past projects in California have included the following: Accelerating soil health adoption Demonstrating groundwater recharge with storm flood flows on agricultural lands Energy and water use efficiency irrigation evaluation and demonstration using telemetry Sequestering carbon in California soils Adaptation of innovative vegetable treatments More information is available on the U.S. Department of Agriculture website. NRCS’s Conservation Easement Program provides financial and technical assistance to conserve agricultural and wetlands. The Agricultural Land Easements specifically protect working agricultural lands and limit non-agricultural uses of the land. The Wetland Reserve Easements restore, protect and enhance wetlands to provide habitat for fish and wildlife, improve water quality by filtering sediments and chemicals, reduce flooding, and recharge groundwater and more. More information is available on the U.S. Department of Agriculture website.