Minnesota

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THE DETAILS

About The Minnesota Pilot
The Minnesota pilot will be led by the Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources, supported by the Minnesota Farmers Union, Minnesota Soil Health Coalition, and Minnesota State Cattlemen’s Association.
Recruitment for implementing districts is underway, with a deadline of March 11th, 2024.  See above for details and check back soon for more information.
Participating Counties
Recruitment for implementing districts is underway, with a deadline of March 11th, 2024.  See above for details and check back soon for more information.
Farmer Eligibility
The Alliance is open to agricultural producers within the participating counties.  Minnesota will release the final districts soon.
Producers may apply with up to two FSA numbers per designated operator.  Payments will go to the FSA-designated operator, or be divided between the primary operator and up to (1) co-applicant per FSA number.
Eligible producers will:
— Enroll a minimum of (3) acres or (10) animal units at an operation located within one of the approved participating districts;
— Have a verified Farm Service Agency (FSA) number (or be willing to obtain one prior to enrolling in the program);
— Confirm that the land enrolled and the practice(s) requested will not also be enrolled in a USDA conservation program or other program associated with the USDA’s Partnerships for Climate Smart Commodities sponsored grant program;
— Confirm that the land enrolled and the practice(s) requested will not be dually enrolled in a cost-share program;
— Confirm that the producer will have control of the land for the term of the producer agreement, and
— Quantify and self-report total greenhouse gas benefits through the use of COMET-Planner
Applications will be at www.allianceforcsa.org during the open enrollment period. Hard copies will be available at district offices.
Approved Climate-Smart Practices
Qualifying practices have been selected from the USDA-NRCS list of conservation practices. All practices will meet approved NRCS standards.  For a complete list including practice enhancements, please use the Approved Practices guide.
Conservation Practice Standard
Conservation Crop Rotation (328)
Residue and Tillage Management, No Till (329)
Cover Crop (340)
Residue and Tillage Management, Reduced Till (345)
Silvopasture (381)
Riparian Herbaceous Cover (390)
Riparian Forest Buffer (391)
Filter Strip (393)
Nutrient Management (590)
Tree/Shrub Establishment (612)
Irrigation Water Management, Alternative Wetting and Drying (449)
Pasture and Hay Planting (512)
Prescribed Grazing (528)
Feed Management (592)
Payments
This project will pay producers $100 per acre or animal unit per year.  Only one practice can be applied per acre or animal unit. Producers will be able to install as many practices as they choose, as long as each practice occurs on different acres or animal units across the farm.
Producers will receive 50% of the payment upfront, 25% after implementation and verification, and 25% after final reporting. Underserved producers may be eligible for a 100% upfront payment. All payments will be issued by Virginia Tech.
Contact Minnesota
If you are an eligible producer interested in participating in the pilot, please contact:
David Weirens
Assistant Director for Programs & Policy
Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources
[email protected]
(763) 229-4308

LEAD PARTNER

SUPPORTING PARTNERS

RESOURCES

The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources is currently accepting applications from soil and water conservation districts to participate in the Alliance.

Please visit the BWSR Grants page or see below for details.

This competitive grant program will fund up to 10 soil and water conservation districts for outreach, recruitment, and enrollment of qualifying producers in the Alliance for Climate-Smart Agriculture (“the Alliance”) Pilot Program, technical assistance to producers, and verification and reporting of conservation practices implemented. The Alliance Pilot Program is a multi-state partnership with Virginia Polytechnic University (Virginia Tech) funded through the USDA Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities Program, which will pay farmers and ranchers who voluntarily implement conservation practices with incentive payments of $100 per acre or per animal unit, that reflect the benefits they deliver to soil health, water, air and climate. Payments are intended to exceed implementation costs, economic losses during transition to new practices, and future climate policy costs.

How to apply:

Applications must be submitted through eLINK, BWSR’s grants management system.

Application deadline:

February 11, 2024 at 4:30 pm. Late applications, or applications not submitted via eLINK, will not be considered.

THE DETAILS

About The Minnesota Pilot
The Minnesota pilot will be led by the Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources, supported by the Minnesota Farmers Union, Minnesota Soil Health Coalition, and Minnesota State Cattlemen’s Association.
Recruitment for implementing districts is underway, with a deadline of February 8th, 2024.  See above for details and check back soon for more information.
Participating Counties
Recruitment for implementing districts is underway, with a deadline of March 11th, 2024.  See above for details and check back soon for more information.
Farmer Eligibility
The Alliance is open to agricultural producers within the participating counties.  Minnesota will release the final districts soon.
Producers may apply with up to two FSA numbers per designated operator.  Payments will go to the FSA-designated operator, or be divided between the primary operator and up to (1) co-applicant per FSA number.
Eligible producers will:
— Enroll a minimum of (3) acres or (10) animal units at an operation located within one of the approved participating districts;
— Have a verified Farm Service Agency (FSA) number (or be willing to obtain one prior to enrolling in the program);
— Confirm that the land enrolled and the practice(s) requested will not also be enrolled in a USDA conservation program or other program associated with the USDA’s Partnerships for Climate Smart Commodities sponsored grant program;
— Confirm that the land enrolled and the practice(s) requested will not be dually enrolled in a cost-share program;
— Confirm that the producer will have control of the land for the term of the producer agreement, and
— Quantify and self-report total greenhouse gas benefits through the use of COMET-Planner
Applications will be at www.allianceforcsa.org during the open enrollment period. Hard copies will be available at district offices.
Approved Climate-Smart Practices
Qualifying practices have been selected from the USDA-NRCS list of conservation practices. All practices will meet approved NRCS standards.  For a complete list including practice enhancements, please use the Approved Practices guide.
Please note that the below practices are grouped based on the payment producers will receive for implementing the practice.  Those listed under Acres will be paid per acre, those listed under Livestock will be paid per animal unit.
AcresLivestock
Conservation Practice Standard
Prescribed Grazing (528)
Feed Management (592)
The above practices will be paid per animal unit.
Payments
This project will pay producers $100 per acre or animal unit per year.  Only one practice can be applied per acre or animal unit. Producers will be able to install as many practices as they choose, as long as each practice occurs on different acres or animal units across the farm.
Producers will receive 50% of the payment upfront, 25% after implementation and verification, and 25% after final reporting. Underserved producers may be eligible for a 100% upfront payment. All payments will be issued by Virginia Tech.
Contact Minnesota
If you are an eligible producer interested in participating in the pilot, please contact:
David Weirens
Assistant Director for Programs & Policy
Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources
[email protected]
(763) 229-4308