Funding Opportunities

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS): Conservation Innovation Grant

The purpose of CIG is to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservationapproaches and technologies in conjunction with agricultural production.CIG projects are expected to lead to the transfer of conservation technologies,management systems, and innovative approaches (such as market-based systems) toagricultural producers, into NRCS technical manuals and guides, or to theprivate sector.  CIG generally funds pilotprojects, field demonstrations, and on-farm conservation research. On-farmconservation research is defined as an investigation conducted to answer aspecific applied conservation question using a statistically valid design whileemploying farm-scale equipment on farms, ranches or private forest lands.  

CIG funds the development and field testing, on-farmresearch and demonstration, evaluation, or implementation of:

  • Approaches to incentivizing conservation adoption,including market-based and conservation finance approaches; and
  • Conservation technologies, practices, and systems. Projects or activities under CIG must comply with all applicablefederal, tribal, state, and local laws and regulations throughout the durationof the project; and
  • Use a technology or approach that was studiedsufficiently to indicate a high probability for success;
  • Demonstrate, evaluate, and verify theeffectiveness, utility, affordability, and usability of natural resource conservationtechnologies and approaches in the field;
  • Adapt and transfer conservation technologies,management, practices, systems, approaches, and incentive systems to improveperformance and encourage adoption;
  • Introduce proven conservation technologies andapproaches to a geographic area or agricultural sector where that technology orapproach is not currently in use.

Technologies and approaches that are eligible for funding ina project’s geographic area using  an EQIPcontract for an established conservation practice standard are ineligible for CIG funding, except where the use of those technologies and approachesdemonstrates clear innovation. 

US Army Corps of Engineers

The Corps of Engineers Planning Assistance to States program  may be useful to utilities looking to improve their source water protection program. In Arkansas Jaysson Funkhouser is the program coordinator ( For more information click here: pas_infosheet_swl[45210]

CitSci Fund

Proposals Due Jan. 27, 2019: US Forest Service, Citizen Science Competitive Funding Proposals (CitSci Funding).

USDA Forest Service is announcing a competitive funding opportunity for Forest Service units and partners to apply for up to $25,000 for citizen science projects. 

The USDA Forest Service is responsible for managing national forests and grasslands in a way that delivers benefits to the public, strengthens communities, and sustains healthy ecosystems. In 2018, the agency piloted the Citizen Science Competitive Funding Program (CitSci Fund), to promote collaboration in support of these goals. Together, partners, volunteers, and the Forest Service are using the data gathered to shape how we manage forests and conserve resources. Due to its success, the program is being expanded for 2019.

The CitSci Fund is a collaborative approach to resource management – each project will have one Forest Service Project Lead and one Partner Project Lead, and demonstrate how volunteers are meaningfully involved. The CitSci Fund supports Forest Service National Priority #3: Promoting shared stewardship by increasing partnerships and volunteerism.

In 2019 the Forest Service is piloting a project incubator model designed to expand how we use citizen science in the diverse work that we do. Projects can start at any level and then apply for the next level during the following year of funding. Projects that complete Level 3, would be considered “model projects” that could be replicated on other Forest Service units.

The incubator has three levels of funding for projects in every stage of development:

  • Level 1: Project Ideation – up to $10,000
  • Level 2: Project Development and Implementation – up to $25,000
  • Level 3: Ongoing Project – up to $10,000


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