Round-up: Conservation Leadership Forum and Tour

NACD’s summer meeting in Minneapolis wrapped up today after a fun-filled weekend of engaging panels and presentations, hands-on learning and networking opportunities, and a historic funding announcement.

NACD, in partnership with NRCS, awarded $2 million in grants for technical assistance on urban ag conservation projects to 42 districts in 25 states. One of the awardees, Ramsey Conservation District – which covers the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area – will put its $50,000 agriculture conservation grant to use providing technical support to community partners as they lease private or public lands to establish community gardens. The district also plans to help gardeners remediate contaminated land for gardening, conduct soils tests, assist with water hook-ups, and create a demonstration garden.

Pictured left to right is Ramsey CD staff member Elizabeth Opheim, Ashley Bennett, and District Manager Ann WhiteEagle in front of Cargill’s Microbial and Plant Geonomics Building – one of the last stops on NACD’s Conservation Leadership Tour held on Monday. To Ann’s left is Ian Cunningham, president of the Minnesota Association of Soil and Water Districts (MASWCD); LeAnn Buck, executive director of MASWCD; and Lee McDaniel, president of NACD.

To view NACD’s release on the urban conservation funding announcement, head to our Newsroom by clicking here.

Update: House spending bill amendments

Several of the spending bill amendments NACD has been tracking over the past week have been approved by House lawmakers, including Coloradan Rep. Doug Lamborn’s amendment to prohibit threatened or endangered listings for species that have not undergone a five-year review.

Another approved amendment, proposed by Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, would prohibit the EPA from penalizing states in the Chesapeake Bay region that fail to meet their mandated pollution-reduction targets. The House also passed Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar’s amendment that would prohibit the use of funds to carry out the draft EPA-USGS Technical Report entitled ‘‘Protecting Aquatic Life from Effects of Hydrologic Alteration.”

Coloradan Rep. Jared Polis’s amendment to prevent the use of federal funds for wild horse sterilization was withdrawn. To watch the House floor debate on the spending bill where NACD was mentioned, click here.

2016 North American Envirothon starts in five days!

This year, Canadian and U.S. students competing in the North American Envirothon will face a Chinese team for the first time. In a release, Envirothon China said it was pleased to announce that a team from a high school affiliated with Shanxi Normal University had won its regional competition and would serve as China’s representative at the North America Envirothon from July 24 to 29 in Ontario, Canada. The Chinese team members are Jinyang Wan, Xinhao Liu, Liming Xiao, Shuhao Liang, and Zisen Li, and hail from Xi'an, China, famous for its Terra Cotta Army.

To learn more about Envirothon, check out today’s NACD press release on the 2016 North American Envirothon competition by clicking here.

The Barn interviews NACD’s Jeff Burwell

Brian Allmer of The Barn interviewed NACD’s Western Issues Specialist Jeff Burwell last week about how NACD helps conservation districts prepare for and clean-up after wildfires. Jeff also told The Barn’s listeners about NACD’s Soil Health Champions Network and what it can do for ranchers and forestland owners, in addition to row crop farmers.

You can listen to the interview and learn more about Jeff by clicking here. To contact Jeff, send an email to

This email was sent to If you are having trouble viewing this email, you may also view it online. To opt out of all communications, click here.
Forward email. .
Email Marketing By