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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.
Editor's note: Due to the Thanksgiving holiday, NACD will not publish an edition of Conservation Clips on Friday, Nov. 23.
NACD Blog: What the Elections Mean for Natural Resources
Last week’s mid-term elections resulted in the U.S. House of Representatives flipping to a Democrat majority for the first time since 2010. In the conservation world, focus is primarily centered on the expired farm bill. However, the elections will also significantly impact the House Committee on Natural Resources.
NACD Blog: Forestry Notes: Districts Facilitate Forest Succession Planning
Forest succession planning involves a series of steps, often facilitated by a qualified professional armed with resources to address each step in the process. The most important step is the first step—initiating the conversation.
NACD Blog: Colorado partnership weathers obstacles for sake of the forest
Colorado’s Upper South Platte Partnership (USPP) is shifting the focus of forest management from counting acres to making acres count. The three-year-old effort in the foothills west of Denver seeks to leverage funding and expertise to implement wildfire mitigation and forest restoration treatments at a landscape scale in critically important watersheds.
Brownfield: The National Association of Conservation Districts Says Farm Bill is Needed Now
The president of the National Association of Conservation Districts says a farm bill must be passed this year, so farmers and landowners can continue to implement voluntary and incentive-based programs instead of a one-size fits all approach. Brent Van Dyke says the success of this model is tied to funding for the conservation title.
Los Angeles Times: California’s most destructive wildfire should not have come as a surprise
They go by different names — Santa Anas, sundowners, diablos — but autumn winds that gain heat and speed as they blow from the interior down the state’s mountain ranges are inevitably the prime ingredient of California’s most destructive wildfires.
The New York Times: Part of the Answer to Climate Change May Be America’s Trees and Dirt, Scientists Say
When people think of potential solutions to global warming, they tend to visualize technologies like solar panels or electric cars. A new study published on Wednesday, however, found that better management of forests, grasslands and soils in the United States could offset as much as 21 percent of the country’s annual greenhouse gas emissions.
Indiana Ag Connection: Roberts Frustrated Over Delays with Farm Bill
Roberts said he wants the so-called Big Four to sign a conference report on Thursday. But Conaway, Roberts said, is holding out from supporting a compromise to reconcile the House farm bill, H.R. 2 (115), with the Senate measure, S. 3042 (115), because he has lingering concerns with at least six titles, among them the commodity, nutrition and conservation titles.
New Food: Using marginal farmlands to improve water quality
In a project that’s been underway since 2011, researchers at Argonne National Laboratory have been studying how shrub willow and switchgrass in sandier, easily dried-out patches of land can not only control erosion, but also suck up excess fertilizer chemicals that could otherwise contaminate surface water and groundwater.
The National Law Review: Supreme Court: Age Discrimination in Employment Act Applies to All State, Local Government Employers
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) applies to state and local government employers, regardless of their size, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a unanimous (8-0) seven-page decision.
Missouri Ag Connection: Over 7,300 Feral Hogs Eliminated from Missouri Landscape So Far
The Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) feral hog strike team has tallied up elimination numbers from January through September. So far, they've yielded a total of 7,339 feral hogs removed by MDC, partner agencies, and private landowners. In 2017, 6,561 feral hogs were removed from the landscape.
AgWeek: Brown’s Ranch finds success in being different, focusing on soil health
It's been a quarter century since Gabe decided to go no-till at the advice of a friend. The decision has helped form the identity of the ranch and has provided ways to stay profitable even in tough times.
The State: As wildfires grow deadlier, officials search for solutions
Creating fire buffers between housing and dry brush, burying spark-prone power lines and lighting more controlled burns to keep vegetation in check could give people a better chance of surviving wildfires, according to experts searching for ways to reduce growing death tolls from increasingly severe blazes in California and across the U.S. West.
The Spectrum: Utah ranchers frustrated as 'glamping' replaces grazing
Rural leaders in Utah who often chafe at how federal officials manage public lands are now also growing frustrated with state authorities who are increasing cancel grazing permits in favor of more-profitable land uses. In one case, Garfield County passed an ordinance that would temporarily block a planned $200 million tent resort for high-end glamour camping, or "glamping," on former grazing land, the Salt Lake Tribune reported .
MPR News: Dirt rich: Healthy soil movement gains ground in farm country
Using less insecticide saves farmers money, because they have to buy less of it. So does eliminating tillage, because farmers are driving tractors across the field fewer times, saving fuel. Lundgren also found that farmers practicing regenerative agriculture often earned extra income by raising other crops and selling cattle fattened by grazing on fields with cover crops.
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