Tag Archives: Agricultural conservation practices

Nutrient Runoff from Agriculture Scrutinized in Chesapeake Bay

Excess fertilizer and manure applied to the Chesapeake Bay’s Eastern Shore are causing poor water-quality in streams that flow into the bay, according to a new publication released March 12 by the U.S. Geological Survey. According to the report, the Chesapeake Bay’s Eastern Shore receives nearly twice as much nitrogen and phosphorus per square mile […]

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Ohio State, Farmers, and EPA Take Steps to Reduce Algal Blooms

On April 2, Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed into law legislation aimed at reducing nutrient runoff and thereby decreasing algal and cyanobacteria blooms in Lake Erie. The new law prohibits farmers from spreading manure when fields are frozen or saturated or when forecasts call for rain. The manure-spreading ban applies to weather forecasts of at […]

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Comment Period Open on USDA Program To Protect Agricultural Lands and Wetlands

On Feb. 26, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that it is accepting public comments until April 28 on an interim final rule for the new Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). The program is designed to help producers protect working agricultural lands and wetlands. The 2014 Farm Bill consolidated three previous conservation easement programs […]

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Successful Partnerships between Agriculture and Water Utilities Highlighted in White Paper

On Feb. 3, the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, AGree, and the U.S. Water Alliance released a white paper entitled Collaborating for Healthy Watersheds. The paper highlights nine successful municipal-agricultural collaborations across the U.S. that address water quality issues at the watershed level. The traditional approach of building more and more advanced water and […]

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Federal Agencies Call Virginia Water Quality Trading Program A National Model

On Dec. 16, federal government representatives, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, and others came together to recognize an innovative, market-based nutrient trading program run by Virginia to improve Chesapeake Bay water quality. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the White House Council on Environmental Quality lauded the trading scheme as a model […]

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EPRI To Host Auction for Water Quality Trading Credits

On April 16 in New York City, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) will host its first public auction for stewardship credits under the pilot interstate Ohio River Basin Water Quality Trading project. Interested participants should notify EPRI by March 16. About 90,000 Stewardship credits for nutrient reduction efforts generated by farmers in Ohio, Indiana, […]

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Iowa Water Utility Could Sue Over Farm Runoff

On Jan. 8, the Des Moines Board of Water Works issued an intent to sue three northwest Iowa counties — Sac, Buena Vista, and Calhoun — over high nitrate levels in the Raccoon and Des Moines rivers. The potential lawsuit is an attempt to require better management of fertilizer runoff on agricultural lands, as nutrients […]

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USDA Announces First of Regional Conservation Partnership Projects

On Jan. 14, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced that 115 high-impact projects across all 50 U.S. states and Puerto Rico will receive more than $370 million in federal funding as part of the new U.S. Department of Agriculture Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). In addition, these projects will leverage an estimated $400 million more […]

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New Mapping Software Helps Reduce Erosion and Water Pollution

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has released a new software tool to help reduce agricultural runoff and erosion. The erosion vulnerability assessment for agricultural lands tool (EVAAL) integrates satellite imaging and geographic information system (GIS) technology at increments as small as 3 m2 (32 ft2) or as large as 70 km2 (30 mi2). […]

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USGS and NRCS Partner to Quantify Effects of Conservation Practices

On Oct. 21, The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced a partnership to examine the benefits of agricultural conservation practices on water quality.  Working together, the two groups will quantify the benefits of voluntary agricultural practices at a watershed scale.  This information will strengthen the effectiveness […]

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