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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.

NACD Blog: Conservation in the Caribbean: Part One
By Brent Van Dyke

This week, leaders and staff from the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) are in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to meet with conservation districts and government officials to learn more about their resource concerns as well as how the islands are recovering from the hurricanes.

NACD Blog: Conservation in the Caribbean: Part Two
By Jim Harreld

The impacts of Hurricanes Irma and Maria may have disappeared from daily news coverage, but they continue to weigh on millions of Americans—particularly those in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

NACD Blog: NACD’s Take: The 2018 Senate Farm Bill
By Coleman Garrison

On Friday, June 8, the Senate Ag Committee released its 2018 Farm Bill (S. 3042), and the legislation passed out of committee on Wednesday, June 13. NACD staff have been busy analyzing the bill to see how our priorities fared.

NACD Blog: Conservation in the Caribbean: Part Three
By Edwin Almodóvar

As director, Maria affected me deeply from a technical standpoint but from an emotional aspect as well. Puerto Rico is my home, and the aftermath of Hurricane Maria was hands-down the worst devastation from a natural disaster I have ever experienced.

Agri-Pulse: Bipartisan farm bill sails through Senate, 86-11
By Philip Brasher

A bipartisan farm bill that would protect crop insurance and commodity programs as well as nutrition assistance from cuts passed the Senate by an overwhelming margin, 86-11, clearing the way for negotiations to begin next month with the House.

Des Moines Register: Farmers are working to reduce nitrate levels, but some factors are out of their control
By Mike Naig

(Opinion) Accurately measuring what’s happening in Iowa’s watersheds is complicated. We know – and numerous studies have shown – that many factors, such as soil type, landscape and weather can have a significant impact on surface water and nitrate levels. While farmers and landowners are making great progress in soil conservation, we are just getting started in our quest to reduce nitrogen loss.

Dakota Farmer: Making poor soils rich again
By Lon Tonneson

It’s estimated that there are as many as 14-20 million acres of sodium or salt-impaired soils in the Dakotas. The wet cycle since the 1990s, the erosion of topsoil and the reduction in small grains and alfalfa in crop rotations are all thought to be part of the problem.

Agri-Pulse: Opinion: Successful Farming Depends on Risk Management Tools and Protecting Our Natural Resources
By Rogers Hoyt and Larry Heitman

(Opinion) A strong and reliable safety net for our nation’s farmers, as well as our soil and wetlands, is a critical component of the farm bill and the future of agricultural sustainability. The production of our food and fiber supply relies on healthy soils and clean water, and producers understand better than anyone that successful farming goes hand-in-hand with good land stewardship.

Des Moines Register: Iowa nitrogen pollution in the water is getting worse, despite hundreds of millions of dollars in spending, study shows
By Donnelle Eller

Nitrogen pollution flowing out of Iowa to the Gulf of Mexico has grown by close to 50 percent over nearly two decades, a new report shows, despite hundreds of millions of dollars spent to stem nutrients entering the state's waterways.

DTN: No Farm Bill Veto Threat: Senate Taking up Amendments Wednesday on CRP, Possibly Payment Limits
By Jerry Hagstrom and Chris Clayton

The Senate farm bill raises the cap in the Conservation Reserve Program by 1 million acres for a total of 25 million acres. Thune's amendment also would allow landowners to hay or graze up to one-third of their CRP acreage every year, in exchange for a 25% decline in the rental payment.

Des Moines Register: Emerald ash borer has​ now been found in 61 of Iowa's 99 counties

State agricultural officials said an insect that has killed millions of ash trees has been found in 61 of Iowa's 99 counties.

The Growler: Soil Farmers: How A Renewed Focus On The Land Is Building More Resilient Farms
By Brian Kaufenberg

In order to reverse the process of degraded grasslands turning into desert, we must look to the thing we think caused the problem in the first place: livestock. Systematically grazing large herds of livestock for defined periods of time across the land creates the necessary conditions for grasses to grow again.

The New York Times: Bumblebees Thrive in the City but Struggle on the Farm
By JoAnna Klein

Oddly, as sprawling cities and vast agricultural fields replace forests and meadows, people have noticed more bumblebees buzzing around cities.

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