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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: Michigan’s Van Buren CD highlights regenerative agriculture and cover crops at annual farming conference
By Erin Fuller

On March 10, over 230 local agricultural producers came together at the Van Buren Conservation District (CD)’s annual “Farming for the Future” conference in Michigan, to learn about various topics, including regenerative agriculture, plant sap analysis, compost, soil health, diversifying grain crops and pasture management. 

Agri-Pulse: Over three million acres enrolled in general CRP
By Ben Nuelle

After nearly four years without a general signup, 3.4 million acres were recently enrolled in the Department of Agriculture’s Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). National Association of Conservation Districts President Tim Palmer said NACD appreciated "USDA’s quick turnaround to enroll new acreage, especially in a time when our nation’s producers need support, and look forward to learning more about the acres and practices accepted under the State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement in this general sign up in light of the changes recently implemented by FSA to this program."


[On Wednesday], conservation district officials and employees assembled online to advocate for locally-led conservation in coordination with the National Association of Conservation Districts’ (NACD) Virtual Advocacy Day.

The Sun: Urban agriculture grant goes to Inland Empire Resource Conservation District

The Inland Empire Resource Conservation District, based in Redlands, recently announced it was awarded an Urban Agriculture Conservation Grant through a partnership with the National Association of Conservation Districts and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Agri-Pulse: USDA county offices go to 'appointment only'
By Steve Davies

(Subscriber Only) Producers who need to talk with someone at their county office now will have to make an appointment, as COVID-19 cases continue to increase nationwide. The Farm Service Agency and Natural Resources Conservation Service are encouraging farmer-customers to call ahead to make an appointment before coming into their local service center, in part to ensure the office is open. USDA released a list of service offices open “by appointment only.”

Conservation Finance Network: The State of Regenerative Agriculture: Growing With Room to Grow More
By Cortney Ahern, Clair Huntley Lafave and Kathryn Sierks

Achieving regenerative agricultural outcomes at scale is paramount for building agricultural resilience and unlocking soil’s carbon sequestration potential.

Nature World News: Cows and Cropland to Help Save the Planet

Research shows that, when there is drought, regenerative farmers often survive. Their lands hold water better, and the grazing systems make the grass healthier. On a global scale, the regenerative farming system, similar to Slabbert's farm, could solve climate change.

Ravalli Republic: The surprising benefits of flash-grazing
By Emy Royce

This technique helps protect the watershed and enhance ranch operations. It also promotes even, consistent grazing. As a result, in combination with increased water retention, pastures become better habitat for increasingly threatened pollinators, like bees and butterflies.

The Yorkshire Post: Plants can share nutrients, Yorkshire scientists discover in new grassland study
By Ruby Kitchen

Their findings show that the plants were able to share out the phosphorus by each preferring to take it up in a different form, in a practice known as ‘‘resource partitioning."

The New York Times: Expect a Soggy U.S. Flood Season, but Less Severe Than Last Year’s
By John Schwartz

Brace for another flooded spring — but not one as bad as last year, forecasters from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration warned on Thursday.

E&E News: Ecosystem improves despite extreme weather — report
By Tamara Ward

(Subscriber Only) Extreme weather negatively affected the health of the Chesapeake Bay last year, but the watershed's ecosystem has improved overall and pollution has decreased, according to an annual report from its oversight program.

Iowa Public Radio: Prairie Research Could Help Farming Become More Resilient, Sustainable
By Amy Mayer

Controlling when, and how often, fire comes through certain sections of the prairie allows scientists to explore its impacts and importance. To understand climate, they have to get a bit more creative.

The New York Times: A Mustang Crisis Looms in the West
By Dave Philipps

With too many animals on public lands and too many on the public’s hands, the federal wild horse management program is short of money and palatable solutions.

No-Till Farmer: The Connection Between Soil Organic Matter and Soil Water

One benefit of increasing soil organic matter is to store more water in your soil. Why does this happen? Because soil organic matter creates pores in a range of sizes. Exactly how much more water is stored due to soil organic matter will depend on soil texture, though.

CropLife: What No One Tells You About Soil Conservation and Long-Term Sustainability?
By Corey Getz and Quint Shambaugh

Although tillage has been reduced over time, according to recent information from the Economic Research Service (ERS), about half of the farmers still use full-width tillage every year and it is in part why we are seeing nutrient losses. While conservation awareness is on the rise, adoption and implementation of sustainable agricultural practices is still a dilemma.

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