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Conservation Clips is a weekly collection of articles distributed by NACD that provides our members and partners with the latest news in what's driving conservation. These articles are not indicative of NACD policy and are the opinions of their authors, unless otherwise noted. If you have a relevant submission or need assistance with accessing articles, please contact the NACD Communications Team.

NACD Blog: SWCD Learning Circles assist female forest landowners

Indiana’s LaPorte County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) is partnering with Women4theLand to focus on female landowner needs through periodic Women’s Conservation Learning Circles.

NACD Blog: Forestry Notes Q&A: Vicki Christiansen

U.S. Forest Service Chief Vicki Christiansen leads a workforce of more than 25,000 employees who steward 193 million acres of national forests and grasslands; supports the world’s largest forestry research organization; and works with states, tribes and others to sustain all forests, so they can benefit all citizens today, and in the future.

NACD Blog: King CD hires staff to address local wildfire concerns

The King Conservation District (KCD) in Renton, Wash., has long worked with landowners on forest stewardship planning. Recently, within the past three years, KCD has expanded its work to cover wildfire resiliency and preparedness.

NACD Blog: New cover crop interseeder aims to simplify planting for area farmers
By Teresa DeMars

Minnesota’s Rice County farmers have been experimenting with planting cover crops out in the field and have been seeing the benefits. Producers reported improved soil health, including erosion control, increased infiltration, weed suppression and higher organic matter. Farmers also reported spending less on fuel and chemicals while in some cases, their yields have been increasing.

New Food Economy: If crop insurance rewarded conservation practices, would more farmers go no-till?
By Jessica McKenzie

Crop insurance works too well for farmers who farm without regard for long-term soil health, and not well enough for the few who do. A new task force wants to change that.

The Stormwater Report: Chesapeake Bay grasses unfazed after record-breaking precipitation

Results from the Chesapeake Bay Program’s 2018 investigation, published in July, suggests that the Bay’s submerged aquatic vegetation has improved. This provides evidence that conservation efforts to rehabilitate the Chesapeake Bay are increasing the ecosystem’s resilience against storms and other stressors.

Forbes: Summer Rains Keep U.S. Drought At Lowest Levels In Decades
By Dennis Mersereau

The United States Drought Monitor’s analysis on July 23, 2019, found drought conditions among their lowest levels since the organization began issuing the weekly report in 2000. The only widespread drought conditions so far this summer exist in the Pacific Northwest and in pockets of the southeastern states.

National Science Foundation: Scientists discover new mechanism for how soils store carbon

Scientists have discovered a new mechanism for determining how carbon is stored in soils, which could improve the climate resilience of crop systems and reduce their carbon footprints. The findings reveal the importance of soil pore structure for stimulating soil carbon accumulation and protection.

The New York Times: America’s Farmers, Reeling From Floods, Face a New Problem: No Water
By Mitch Smith

For farmers battered by floods and blizzards and one of the rainiest springs on record, this has been a year tainted by too much water.

Phys.org: Previously unknown mechanism causes increased forest water use, new study says

Researchers have discovered a previously unknown mechanism that causes increased forest water use, advances understanding of soil biogeochemical control of forest water cycles and highlights threats to plants from water stress under acid deposition, according to a new study.

The Seattle Times: Senators to introduce bipartisan wildfire bill
By Matt Volz

Senators from California and Montana said Thursday that they plan to introduce a bipartisan bill that aims to protect communities from wildfires like the one that killed 85 people and destroyed much of the Northern California town of Paradise last year.

Des Moines Register: Trees, shrubs and soybeans getting eaten up? Blame the late summer outbreak of Japanese beetles and thistle caterpillars
By Aaron Calvin

A cool start with some flashes of extreme heat with consistent rain — the summer of 2019 has been a little off-kilter, which has been affecting the insects of Iowa, in turn.

Forbes: This Company Is Helping Farmers Wean Themselves Off Synthetic Fertilizers
By Erik Kobayashi-Solomon

Azotic Technologies has created and released a new product that uses a natural occurring, food-grade, nitrogen-fixing bacteria to provide macronutrients to plants. This product can allow farmers to cut fertilizer use by around 30 percent.

U.S. AgNet: UND Researchers Explore How Fire Helps Prairie Grasslands

At the University of North Dakota's Oakville Prairie Field Station, a group of researchers and students are studying the effect prescribed burns have on the soil, plants, animals and genetic resources in the grasslands of the Northern Great Plains of North America.

U.S. AgNet: $2 Million to Help NYS Farmers Address Climate Change Impacts

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced $2.3 million will be awarded to 24 farms across the state through the Climate Resilient Farming Grant Program. The program helps farms reduce their operational impact on the environment and address the impacts of extreme weather events resulting from climate change. Awarded projects focus on best management practices to enhance soil health, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote energy savings.

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