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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.

Agri-Pulse: Farmers like new ESA rules, but enviros promise court battles
By Steve Davies

Three new rules will make a variety of changes to the ESA, including narrowing areas to be considered for critical habitat designations, allowing the Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service to gather information on the economic impacts of listing species, and setting standards for deciding whether federal agencies’ mitigation efforts are sufficient to address harm to listed species.

Capital Journal: Farmers prevented from planting crops on more than 19 million acres

Agricultural producers reported they were not able to plant crops on more than 19.4 million acres in 2019, according to a new report released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This marks the most prevented plant acres reported since USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) began releasing the report in 2007 and 17.49 million acres more than reported at this time last year.

Reading Eagle: Protecting pollinators might be just what the doctor ordered for good health
By Michilea Patterson

People who engage in pollinator-friendly activities and protect pollinator habitats can help to assist in the production of nutrient-dense crops.

The Daily Beast: Could Restoring Soil Help Halt Climate Change?
By David R. Montgomery

It’s time to take soil seriously. As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states with very high confidence in its latest report, land degradation represents “one of the biggest and most urgent challenges” that humanity faces.

Bloomberg: U.S. Farmers Plant Crops You Won't Eat in Climate Change Fight
By Denitsa Tsekova and Michael Hirtzer

Cover crops have always been a part of agriculture. But recently they’ve gained a fancy new name, regenerative farming, and increasingly they’re being marketed as a low-tech, but effective weapon against an aggressive and unpredictable foe: climate change.

Phys.org: Drought spells changes for soil microbes
By Janet Jansson

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Kansas State University found that soil drying significantly affected the structure and function of soil microbial communities.

The Associated Press: Farmers use tech to squeeze every drop from Colorado River
By Dan Elliott

The U.S. Department of Agriculture station outside Greeley and other sites across the Southwest are experimenting with drones, specialized cameras and other technology to squeeze the most out of every drop of water in the Colorado River.

University of California-Davis: Compost Key to Sequestering Carbon in the Soil
By Kat Kerlin

By moving beyond the surface level and literally digging deep, scientists at the University of California, Davis, found that compost is a key to storing carbon in semi-arid cropland soils, a strategy for offsetting CO2 emissions.

The University of Iowa: University of Iowa Receives $1.07 Million for Water Quality from EPA
By Ashley Murdie

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the University of Iowa will receive a $1.07 million EPA Farmer to Farmer Cooperative Agreement to fund a project that improves water quality, habitat, and environmental education.

Science Daily: Hard-working termites crucial to forest, wetland ecosystems

A recent study showed that termite activity in the soils of wetlands can help improve soil structure and nutrient content.

AgriLife Today: Newly discovered mussels may help refocus conservation efforts in Texas

A team of researchers recently discovered two new freshwater mussel species in Texas, which will likely impact current conservation efforts by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Phys.org: Trees in the U.S. facing devastating threats due to invasive species
By Bob Yirka

A team of researchers from Purdue University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture has found that trees in the United States are facing devastating threats due to invasive species.

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