Fed Grants Help Farmers With Conservation

BERLIN — The federal government last week announced nearly $2 million in grants to help farmers in the Chesapeake Bay watershed conserve the estuary under the Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) program.

Maryland Senators Barbara Mikulski and Ben Cardin announced last week the U.S. Department of Agriculture had awarded grants totaling $1.9 million for innovative agriculture initiatives aimed at preserving and protecting the Chesapeake. Among the grants is an $848,000 allocation to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to help farmers convert manure to energy to generate income and improve water quality in the Chesapeake. Also awarded was a $650,000-plus grant to the Maryland Department of Agriculture for progressive management practices for drainage systems on the Eastern Shore.

“The Chesapeake Bay is a part or who we are as Marylanders and our heritage and culture,” said Mikulski. “Our communities want to stand up for the health of the bay, but they can’t do it on their own. This federal funding will help Maryland’s farmers keep doing their part to protect this national treasure.”

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