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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 NACD Communications Manager Sara Kangas.

Des Moines Register: Conservation helps the ag economy, but farmers bear all of the costs
By Scott Henry

(Opinion) A study from Environmental Defense Fund and managerial accounting firm K·Coe Isom AgKnowledge finds that conservation can boost farm profitability. The analysis includes detailed financial case studies of three Midwestern corn, soy and wheat farmers — including my fourth-generation farm — as well as a comparative analysis of 10 additional farms. Overall, the study found that conservation practices delivered positive returns on investment for farmers’ operations and created value far beyond the farm field.

NewsOK: Noble Research Institute to boost soil conservation efforts
By Jack Money

Noble Research Institute is developing protocols that seek to boost cropland productivity using carbon sequestration efforts designed to boost water retention and quality. Ultimately, they seek to encourage farmers and ranchers across the nation to use those protocols by giving them a chance to join an Ecosystem Service Markets program the institute also is working with consultants to develop.

The Hill: Congress sends first spending package to Trump in push to avert shutdown
By Niv Elis

The House passed a $147 billion "minibus" spending package Thursday and sent it to President Trump for a signature, taking initial steps to avert another possible government shutdown. The two chambers decided to pair a short-term continuing resolution (CR) extending all government funding until Dec. 7.

Tri-State Livestock News: Farm bill conference slows as Congress focuses on approps bills

The current farm bill expires September 30, but progress on reaching compromises on a new bill appeared to slow down late this week as Congress began to focus on deals on fiscal 2019 appropriations bills that also need to be passed by the end of the month if a government shutdown is to be avoided.

Circa: The government says there are too many protected wild horses. Is slaughter the solution?
By Joce Sterman, Alex Brauer, Chris Castano and Adam Fleishman

With the wild horse program, there are countless issues. Managing this massive herd isn't just about passing a law, setting aside government land and letting majestic creatures run free. As advocates battle for animal rights and humane treatment, lawmakers and lobbyists see other points to argue, including overpopulation and deteriorating range conditions.

The Leader: Drought keeps tight grip on county, state
By Jeff DeMoss

According to the National Integrated Drought Information System, 100 percent of the population in Utah is currently being affected by abnormal dryness or drought, compared with only about one-third of the state’s population at this time last year.

The Sacramento Bee: Cal Fire makes earliest request ever for more firefighting dollars in record year
By Dale Kasler

Barely two months into the new fiscal year, Cal Fire has already spent $431 million fighting fires out of a total budget of $443 million. Another $234 million would increase the budget by about 50 percent.

The Epoch Times: Federal Court Blocks Water of the United States Rule in 3 States
By Kristen Meriwether

On Sept. 13 a U.S. District judge in Texas temporarily blocked enforcement of the Obama-era Waters of the United States rule (WOTUS) in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi, handing a victory to land owners in those states.

KUNC: Beavers: An Unlikely Solution To Western Drought
By Maggie Mullen

It's no secret that water is a problem in the West. Historically, the humble beaver helped maintain wetlands and ponds across the arid landscape but their populations were decimated during the fur trade and their numbers dropped dramatically from 400 million to just 100,000 by the turn of the twentieth century. But Canada's national animal is making a comeback and scientists think they have an important role to play as our region fights drought.

Hoosier Ag Today: Indiana River Friendly Farmers Nearing 1000
By Andy Eubank

Forty-nine Indiana farmers were honored recently as River Friendly Farmers, a program that brings together government agencies, agricultural organizations, Indiana Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) and farmers to recognize farmers’ efforts protecting rivers, lakes and streams in the state.

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