USDA Announces $10.7 Million for Critical Water Research Grants
May 31, 2016
USDA has announced the availability of $10.7 million in funding for research that could solve critical water problems in rural and agricultural watersheds across the United States. This funding is available through the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Water for Agriculture Challenge Area for universities, non-profits, and others to conduct projects that tackle critical water issues by developing both regional systems for the sustainable use and reuse, flow and management of water, and that address water issues focused on production and environmental sustainability efforts at the watershed and farm scale. There is also a focus on solutions for conserving higher quality water and understanding human behavior and its influence on decision making for agricultural water use in the Fiscal Year 2016 projects.
To date, more than $20.5 million in research, education and extension grants have been awarded through AFRI’s Water for Agriculture Challenge Area. Examples of previously funded projects include a grant for the University of Nevada-Reno’s Coordinated Agricultural Project to assess the impacts of climate change on future water supplies and enhance the climate resiliency of tribal agriculture; and a grant for Clemson University to integrate remote sensing products and weather forecast information for farmers and growers to address the best products, increase agricultural drought indices, and develop an agricultural drought forecasting model to provide near real-time feedback.