USDA awards $17M to three watershed projects in Iowa

Cedar River canoeing
Canoeing along the Cedar River. (CBJ file photo)
Three regional conservation projects in Iowa have received federal funding, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship announced Monday.
“There is great conservation work happening in the Floyd River watershed,” Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig said in a May 17 news release. “The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship has two demonstration projects underway, dedicated staff who provide technical support to the projects, and local farmers, landowners and partners who want to be involved. We’re able to leverage the state’s investments and our proven results to get additional federal dollars, which helps us make a greater impact on soil health and water quality in this priority watershed.”
Funding from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) will support the Floyd River Water Quality Partnership, the Cedar River Source Water Partnership Project and the Southeast Iowa Watershed Partnership.
The Center Square reports federal funding of $7 million will support the Cedar River Source Water Partnership Project, which is a collaboration of the department, the city of Cedar Rapids and “other municipalities and agriculture partners.” The department will invest $8 million, and public-and-private partners will contribute $12.3 million.
“Cedar Rapids has been recognized nationally for our work to improve water quality,” Cedar Rapids Utilities Director Roy Hesemann said in a Cedar Rapids news release about the Cedar River project. “With the Middle Cedar Partnership Project, we helped install real water quality improvement practices with demonstrable benefits. The Cedar River Source Water Partnership will take what we learned from that project and scale up our efforts to improve water quality in the Cedar River.”
More information can be found here.