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NY allocates $16M to help farms adapt to climate change
New York Ag Connection - 11/15/2023

New York Governor Kathy Hochul has announced that the state will allocate nearly $16 million to 116 farms across the state through the Climate Resilient Farming Grant Program. This program is designed to help farms implement sustainable practices and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“New York’s agricultural industry is often faced with severe challenges associated with our changing climate, from flooding to droughts that impact their crops and their livelihoods,” Hochul said in a statement.

The funding will help farms implement projects in three different categories:

Livestock management: This category includes projects that reduce methane emissions from livestock, such as installing cover digesters and improving feed management.

Adaptation and resiliency: This category includes projects that help farms deal with extreme weather events, such as planting cover crops to prevent erosion and installing water management systems to cope with droughts and floods.

Soil health: This category includes projects that increase soil organic matter, reduce erosion and nutrient pollution in waterways, and increase crop yields.

The Climate Resilient Farming Grant Program has been in place since 2015, and during that time, it has provided nearly $36 million in funding to 386 farms across the state. This funding has helped farms implement a variety of sustainable practices, such as planting cover crops, improving grazing management, and installing renewable energy systems.

The program has been successful in helping farms adapt to climate change. For example, Rick Villnave, a grain and produce farmer in Cortland County, has seen success in implementing cover crops on his 250-acre farm. Villnave said that the funding he has received through the Cortland County Soil and Water Conservation District has been essential in helping him plant and maintain his cover crops. He has seen increased yields since implementing cover crops and has saved $10,000 on fertilizer as the soil has retained more nitrogen.

Here how the $16 million will be allocated:

• Capital Region: $1,221,092 to four farms

• Central New York: $1,817,866 to 17 farms

• Finger Lakes: $4,342,175 to 40 farms

• Hudson Valley: $381,210 to five farms

• Mohawk Valley: $2,804,446 to 12 farms

• North Country: $1,283,743 to 11 farms

• Southern Tier: $1,801,037 to 11 farms

Western New York: $1,469,802 to 12 farms

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