COLUMBUS — USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service will fund conservation projects in 41 Mississippi River Basin watersheds in 12 states to implement conservation practices that prevent, control and trap nutrient runoff from agricultural land.
Under the Mississippi River Basin Healthy Watersheds Initiative (MRBI), NRCS will provide up to $43 million in financial assistance through conservation programs to support more than 70 existing projects in the following states: Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Minnesota, Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee and Wisconsin.
Ohio will receive a $337,000. Partner organizations participating in the initiative will contribute additional financial resources.
The MRBI will assist NRCS and its conservation partners in expanding their capacity to improve water quality and treat other natural resource concerns.
In addition to avoiding, controlling and trapping nutrient runoff, participating farmers and landowners voluntarily implement conservation practices that improve wildlife habitat; restore wetlands; and maintain agricultural productivity.
Key conservation practices include nutrient management, conservation crop rotation and residue and tillage management.
Farmers and landowners can also use other conservation practices such as restoring wetlands, planting trees along streams to filter nutrients out of water draining off the farm, and drainage water management.
Participants can also use financial assistance to install edge-of-field monitoring systems in specific locations within the selected watersheds.