Thursday, January 5, 2012

Deadline for USDA 2012 Conservation Innovation Grant Pre-proposals is January 31

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) issued a press release on January 4, reminding applicants that January 31 is the last day to submit project pre-proposals for fiscal year 2012 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) from the NRCS. 

This year's CIG projects focus on nutrient management, energy conservation, soil health, wildlife and CIG projects assessment. NRCS notes that it is especially interested in projects that demonstrate:
  • Optimal combinations of nutrient source, application rate, placement and timing that improve nutrient recovery by crops.
  • Procedures for refining the usefulness of the phosphorous index in reducing phosphorous losses.
  • Suites of conservation practices that protect water quality.
  • Renewable energy systems that reduce the use of fossil fuels and increase energy efficiency on farms.
  • The impacts of cover crops, crop rotations, tillage and other conservation practices on soil health.
  • Conservation practices that increase the water-holding capacity of soils.
  • Decision tools that help producers assess their operations and conservation needs in order to improve wildlife habitat.
  • Assess the technology transfer potential of completed CIG projects.
CIG enables NRCS to work with other public and private entities to accelerate technology transfer and adoption of promising technologies and approaches to address some of the Nation's most pressing natural resource concerns. CIG will benefit agricultural producers by providing more options for environmental enhancement and compliance with Federal, State, and local regulations. NRCS administers CIG.  CIG funds will be awarded through a competitive grants process. At least 50 percent of the total cost of CIG projects must come from non-Federal matching funds, including cash and in-kind contributions provided by the grant recipient. 

To view NRCS's complete Announcement of CIG program funding, visit the Conservation Innovation Grants program page. The announcement can also be viewed online as a PDF file at

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