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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: Did You Know: There’s a Soil and Water Conservation Merit Badge?
By Sara Kangas

In March of 2019, the Harford Soil Conservation District (SCD) in Maryland revitalized a program to educate local scouts to help them achieve the requirements of the soil and water conservation merit badge.

NACD Blog: New England Leadership Meeting focuses on forestry

The New England Leadership Meeting (NELM) met Mar. 25-26 at Wentworth by the Sea in Portsmouth, N.H., bringing together conservation leaders from the six New England states. This year’s theme was forestry and climate change.

NACD Blog: Forestry Notes Q&A: Congressman Bruce Westerman

Congressman Bruce Westerman is serving his third term as representative from the fourth district of Arkansas. He serves on the Committee on Natural Resources and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, where he is Ranking Member of the Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee. Congressman Westerman visited with NACD Forestry Specialist Mike Beacom last month.

The Tribune-Democrat: Conservation groups looking to calculate return on years of local investments
By David Hurst

Until now, no one’s ever tried to quantify the impact of conservation efforts dollars across the Laurel Highlands region. Area conservation groups are trying to find out, spearheading a study to calculate the economic return from their collective decades of environmental improvement efforts.

StarTribune: Scientists breed hazelnuts as the next cash crop for Midwest farmers
By Greg Stanley

It’s the subject of an ambitious effort to convince farmers to plant one million hybrid hazelnut bushes across the Upper Midwest, using the plant’s deep roots to prevent the runoff of soil and farm chemicals while giving farmers a new source of income.

E&E News: NEPA looms over drought plan enthusiasm
By Jeremy P. Jacobs

(Subscriber Only) Some lawyers say the Drought Contingency Plan, or DCP, may be built on shaky legal ground and could be vulnerable to litigation — depending on how the Bureau of Reclamation implements it. At issue is whether it complies with the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA.

Miami Herald: Gov. DeSantis picks panel to tackle ‘massive’ blue-green algae problem
By Samantha J. Gross

The blue-green algae task force was just one of the governor’s proposals included in his announcement Jan. 10 of sweeping measures he would take to clean up Florida’s water. Other promises DeSantis made included spending $2.5 billion and launching more aggressive policies to address the algae that is building up in Lake Okeechobee and polluting the state’s coasts.

Penn State News: 'Right' cover-crop mix good for both Chesapeake and bottom lines
By Jeff Mulhollem

The results show clearly that cover-crop species selection and mixture design can substantially mitigate tradeoffs between nitrogen retention and nitrogen supply to cash crops, providing a powerful tool for managing nitrogen in cropping systems.

The Weather Channel: North Carolina, Atlanta Bee Highways Create Communities For Both Pollinators and People
By Jan Wesner Childs

The bee highways are interconnected groups of hives located on corporate campuses or on building rooftops, each within a three-mile radius of each other because that is how far honey bees are likely to fly in search of food. The Raleigh-Durham project is almost completed and will stretch some 60 miles. Atlanta's bee highway will be 36 miles long.

The Hill: Arbor Day and forests: The false choice between the environment and the economy
By Dave Tenny

(Opinion) While our private working forests are sequestering and storing millions of metric tons of carbon every year, a new report shows that they are also supporting a staggering 2.5 million jobs and $109 billion in payroll – mostly in rural communities that need the economic support. Private working forests account for $288 billion dollars in sales and manufacturing each year, which is greater than the entire GDP of Connecticut.

Public Radio Tulsa: Endangered Beetle Cherokee Nation Created Conservation Area for Could be Downgraded to "Threatened"
By Matt Trotter

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Wednesday after 30 years on the endangered species list, the American burying beetle can be downgraded to "threatened."

Casper Star Tribune: Forest Service unveils proposed plan for prairie dogs in Wyoming grassland amid concerns from conservationists
By Christine Peterson

The new plan states part of its purpose is to “place greater emphasis on control and active management of prairie dog colonies to address significant concerns related to health, safety, and economic impacts on neighboring landowners.”

CBSDenver: Why Did The Lesser Prairie Chickens Cross The State Line?

The CPW team plans to track the birds for the next two to four years. The goal is to re-populate a 33,000-acre area of grassland that was once home to tens of thousands of lesser prairie chickens, and spanned the Comanche National Grassland in Baca County, the Cimarron National Grassland in Morton County, Kan., as well as privately owned rangeland and Conservation Reserve Program property.

Drovers: New Strategy Aims to Save Sagebrush in Western states

The 248-page document released this month emphasizes new technologies and analytics as lands managers try to turn around a decades-long losing streak to a devastating combination of invasive plants and wildfires.

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