USDA Launches First Phase of Soil Carbon Monitoring Efforts through CRP

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is investing $10 million in a new initiative to sample, measure, and monitor soil carbon on Conservation Reserve Program acres. The investment seeks to better quantify the climate outcomes of the program. USDA said CRP is an important tool in the Nation’s fight to reduce the worst impacts of climate change facing our farmers, ranchers, and foresters. This initiative will begin implementation in fall 2021 with three partners. The announcement is part of a broader, long-term soil carbon monitoring effort that supports USDA’s commitment to deliver climate solutions to agricultural producers and rural America through voluntary, incentive-based solutions.

USDA partners will conduct soil carbon sampling on three categories of CRP practice types: perennial grass, trees, and wetlands.  The three Climate Change Mitigation Assessment Initiative projects are funded through FSA’s program to work with partners to identify Monitoring, Assessment and Evaluation projects to quantify CRP environmental benefits to water quality and quantity, wildlife, and rural economies.

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