Seventy of the top agriculture, conservation, and wildlife groups delivered a letter to Congress last week asking for robust funding for conservation programs and technical assistance for the fiscal year 2022.
In the letter, groups like the American Farmland Trust, the National Association of Conservation Districts, and many others called on House and Senate appropriators to provide necessary robust increases to discretionary USDA conservation funding and reject any cuts to farm bill conservation programs through the FY 2022 appropriations process.
The coalition says, “As Congress and the USDA continue to increase focus on climate change and the opportunities that agriculture and forestry can provide to sequester carbon, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and build resilience, funding for conservation support is more important now than ever.”
The letter asks lawmakers to maintain full funding for conservation programs mandated by the 2018 Farm Bill. They also want appropriators to provide at least $1.2 billion in discretionary funding for Conservation Operations, including $1.1 billion for Conservation Technical Assistance. This money facilitates Natural Resources Conservation Service operations outside the mandatory farm bill programs.
“Technical assistance is essential for the delivery of conservation support for farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners across the country by providing capacity and conservation planning to support implementation,” the letter says.
(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters)