Funding for water, energy efficiency announced

From the National Association of Wheat Growers

The U.S. Departments of Agriculture (USDA) and Interior (DOI) yesterday announced more than $47 million in funding to help water districts and producers on private working lands better conserve water resources. The funds include $15 million in USDA funds and $32.6 million from the Bureau of Reclamation for local projects to improve water and energy efficiency and provide a strengthened federal response to ongoing and potential drought across 13 states in the West. The Bureau of Reclamation funding supports 76 local projects through the DOI’s WaterSMART program. Funding from USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) will support on-farm water delivery system improvements through its Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), in tandem with the DOI WaterSMART funded competitive grant projects and cost share grants.

More details on the program and projects announced today can be found on the WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grants website and on the Drought Response Program website. Through EQIP, NRCS is providing $5.2 million in on-farm assistance to complement several projects that have been funded previously by Reclamation, and will provide an additional $10 million in 2017 to support some of the Reclamation projects announced today.