CEAP survey shows conservation commitment

Ag Secretary Vilsack says a survey in the Upper Mississippi River Basin shows the commitment of farmers and ranchers to conservation. The Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) survey shows farmers have made major reductions of sediment (69% reduction), phosphorus (reduced by 49%) and nitrogen loss (18 %) while reducing the “relatively small” pesticide risk to human health (by nearly 50%). Vilsack says, “These are very significant findings in all four of these categories.”

Vilsack says while practices to protect the river basin from runoff are impressive, there’s still work to be done, “About 60 percent of the cropland, we estimate, still needs nutrient management,” says Vilsack. “And that goes, basically, to appropriate timing, appropriate rates and the right method.”

Vilsack says comprehensive, targeted strategies are the key to maximizing conservation benefits. Earlier this week, Vilsack announced 30 million dollars in funding for enhanced conservation practices targeting runoff in a dozen Mississippi River basin states.

He says similar studies in the Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) in other watershed regions of the nation are underway.

Webinar audio with Tom Vilsack held this morning (24 min. MP3)

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