TNC and USDA Announce Multi-State Cooperative Agreement
The Nature Conservancy and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announce the two organizations have entered into a five-year cooperative agreement to increase private land conservation in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and South Dakota.
The two organizations have a mutual interest in successfully implementing the conservation programs authorized by federal legislation known as the Farm Bill, which is updated about every five years. The most recent Farm Bill passed with strong bipartisan support and was signed into law in late 2018.
Through this new agreement, The Nature Conservancy and NRCS will prioritize the geographies and natural resource issues where the two organizations can work together to have more impact delivering conservation assistance across the Great Plains.
“This will be a new way of looking at conservation impacts across the entire landscape, not just individual places,” says Matt Meyerhoff, NRCS acting assistant state conservationist for partnerships in Kansas.
NRCS is a federal agency that provides planning, technical and financial assistance to landowners to conserve the natural resources on their land through programs like the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) and Conservation Reserve Program (CRP).
The Nature Conservancy, the world’s largest conservation organization, works in each of these states and has prioritized increasing sustainable grazing and soil health practices as key agricultural strategies. “This agreement opens more opportunity for collaboration that crosses state lines, much in the way nature is not confined by geo-political boundaries,” says Rob Manes, Kansas state director for TNC. “We’re looking forward to leveraging the staff and expertise of both organizations and ultimately get more conservation directly on the ground.”
The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 76 countries and territories—37 by direct conservation impact and 39 through partners—we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.