NEW YORK (WWTI) – Governor Kathy Hochul announced that over $13.8 million has been awarded through the State’s Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program to 33 projects across New York.
“New York State has long been a leader in the fight against climate change, and today, I’m proud to say that we are continuing that legacy with this round of funding,”Governor Kathy Hochul
The funding supports agricultural water quality conservation projects that will:
- Benefit 80 farms;
- Enhance water quality in priority watersheds; and
- Protect the environment.
This announcement is part of Governor Hochul’s commitment to protecting the state’s natural resources and environment through NYS’s leading climate agenda.
“Preserving our environment starts with ensuring our communities across the state have the resources to implement sustainable methods and best management practices. These projects will protect clean water across New York State and help New York’s farmers continue their work to mitigate the impacts of climate — creating a brighter future for all.”Governor Kathy Hochul
The 33 projects awarded to 22 county Soil and Water Conservation Districts will support on-farm environmental planning and the execution of best management practice systems to:
- Keep nutrients and other potential pollutants from entering waterways;
- Promote soil health; and
- Aid farms to be more resilient to climate change-driven extreme precipitation.
Best management practice systems include a variety of measures, such as installing vegetative buffers along streams, planting cover crops, enhancing nutrient management through manure storage and other conservation measures.
The North Country will receive $844,882 to work with nine farms in the area, the complete statewide list of awards is bellow:
- Western New York: $764,876 to work with 6 farms;
- Finger Lakes: $2,869,595 to work with 28 farms;
- Central New York: $5,548,936 to work with 23 farms;
- Southern Tier: $2,381,037 to work with 7 farms;
- Mohawk Valley: $1,166,366 to work with 3 farms;
- North Country: $844,882 to work with 9 farms; and
- Mid Hudson: $248,211 to work with 4 farms.
The North Country’s award was split between two Soil and Water Conservation Districts.
- Franklin County was awarded $387,655 to work with 6 farms in the Salmon, Chateaugay and St. Regis River Watersheds and will cover 3,195 acres of cover crops; and
- Lewis County was awarded $457,227 to work with 3 farms in the Black River Watershed and will cover 6,263 acres of cover crops.
The North Country’s awards will:
- Plant cover crops to reduce erosion, sedimentation and nutrient loading in the watersheds;
- Improve soil health by building organic matter, increasing nutrient uptake and the capacity for the soil to absorb and hold water; and
- Increase the farms’ resiliency to climate change-driven extreme weather conditions.
For a complete list of projects awarded, please visit the Department of Agriculture and Markets’ website.
Over the past 29 years, New York State has supported projects covering over 600 separate watersheds across the State, including over 1000 prescribed rotational grazing systems that rotate livestock on grazing pastures. Nutrient management and manure storage projects supported by the program help farms actively balance nutrient supply and crop nutrient demand. More than 800 acres of riparian buffer have been made to filter nutrients and sediment, protect surface water, stabilize streambanks, improve aquatic habitat and reduce impacts from flooding.
- More than 12,000 acres of reduced tillage practices have been implemented;
- More than 145,000 acres of cover crops have been planted;
- Over 19,000 acres of cover crop will be planted; and
- Over 50 acres of herbaceous and forested buffers will be implemented.
The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets administers the Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program in coordination with the New York State Soil and Water Conservation Committee. The program is a part of the Agricultural Environmental Management framework, an effort that helps farmers achieve higher levels of environmental stewardship and more efficient, cost-effective farming systems.
The Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program builds on New York State’s efforts to provide water quality protections, including the State’s $3.5 billion commitment to ensure that all New Yorkers have access to clean water and its actions taken to combat climate change.