Local News

Cortland County Soil and Water Conservation District Awarded Over $1 Million by NY State


On Tuesday, November 14th, New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced almost $16 million dollars awarded through round 7 of the Climate Resilient Farming Grant Program, which will aid 116 farms throughout the state on the impact of climate change.

The Climate Resilient Farming Program is part of the State Agricultural Environmental Management, which is led locally by county Soil and Water Conservation Districts and the participating farmers.

“New York’s agricultural industry is too often faced with severe challenges associated with our changing climate, from flooding to droughts that impact their crops and their livelihood,” Governor Hochul said. “The Climate Resilient Farming Grant Program is addressing these challenges head on, helping our farmers to implement projects that prevent weather-related damage and also ensure our farmers are part of the solution to climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and reducing their environmental footprint.”

For Cortland County, the Cortland County Soil and Water Conservation District has been awarded $1,036,389 dollars, which will go towards 6 projects. A breakdown of the the grants may be found below:

  • $196,308 dollars will go towards the district assisting a dairy farmer in implementing a system in improving the farm’s ability to manage nutrients, which will eliminate 2,400 truckloads and fuel usage annually associated with transporting and spreading nutrients in the fields. A forest buffer will also be installed.
  • $257,561 dollars will go towards assisting a dairy farmer in implementing an irrigation water management system and riparian forest buffer system. The systems will make the farm more resilient to drought with a reliable water supply of 3 million gallons. The farm will also allow Virgil Fire to install a dry hydrant on the property.
  • $83,842 dollars will have the district work with a small cash crop operation to implement a stream corridor rehabilitation plan, which will include planting of trees and shrubs for a forest buffer along the stream corridor.
  • $82,842 dollars will be allocated for the district to work with a local orchard in implementing an irrigation water management project. An irrigation pond will capture overflow from an already existing irrigation system. This will increase the orchards resilience to flooding.
  • $300,187 dollars will have the district implement a silage leachate irrigation water management system on a 1,700 acre dairy farm that is in the Tioughnioga River watershed. The project will have 1,250 feet of buried piping, a pumping plant, and a traveling sprinkler system. The sprinkler system will eliminate the need of truck hauling and allow the farm to irrigate during droughts and minimize their crop loss. This project will also include a forest buffer of about 1,100 linear feet of river shoreline.
  • $115,708 dollars will go towards the implementation of a riparian buffer on 1.4 acres, 100 acres of cover crops, and the installation of a crossing for manure injection systems to open access to an additional 170 acres of cropland. The buffer will reduce soil erosion, reduce runoff, enhance soil health, and increase organic matter.

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