In addition to working within Federal conservation programs, the district staff will also work with landowners to write and administer grants for conservation projects.

Floating Island Project to Test Whether Artificial Floating Islands can Provide Water Quality Benefits.

Federal Grants

The principal federal grant the district applies for is the Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) through The Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), which is a voluntary program.  This grant is intended to encourage the development and adoption of innovative conservation

approaches and technologies. The program focuses on technologies that improve natural resource management while supporting increased production. Under CIG, Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds are used to award competitive grants to non-Federal governmental or nongovernmental organizations, Tribes, or individuals.

At the District, we have received a number of CIG grants to work with agricultural producers in a variety of different ways.  These grants seek to test technology in local environments to determine large scale applicability. CIG enables NRCS to work with other public and private entities to accelerate the wide spread introduction and adoption of promising technologies and approaches to address some of the Nation’s most pressing natural resource concerns to agricultural producers.

Recycling Tunnel Sprayer Retrofit.

Example of Previous CIG Grant

In 2012, the district was awarded a CIG grant to work with vineyard producers to cost share recycling tunnel sprayers to reduce chemical drift and increase on target deposition.

The tunnel style sprayer retrofits encompass the entire plant row.  Spray is applied from both sides of the plant and the curtains capture the excess spray where it is recirculated through a filter and returned to the spray tank.  These tunnels are documented to reduce drift by 95%, increase deposition by 30% and reduce overall chemical usage by 40% according to peer reviewed research.

As part of the grant agreement, the district collected information from growers using the new technology about their experience using the equipment and their documented chemical savings.  This information is available in a final report here.

State Grants

Skid Steer Brush Mower to Remove Noxious Weeds and Prepare for Planting Native Trees and Shrubs.

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB) is a state agency that provides grants to help Oregonians take care of local streams, rivers, wetlands and natural areas. OWEB grants are funded from the Oregon Lottery, federal dollars, and salmon license plate revenue. This is the main grant funder the District uses for local projects that improve watershed function and health.

There are two types of grants that the District typically applies for:

OWEB Small Grants – These are competitive grants that are up to $10,000 in value and require 25% matching contribution either in cash or it can be in kind (labor for example). These grants are evaluated on a quarterly submission cycle.

Heavy Use Area Installed to Help Prevent Runoff and Protect Pastures in the Winter.

The application is then reviewed by a local team, ranked, and either recommended for funding or not. Once a grant is funded it needs to be completed in a two year time frame and requires two years of monitoring after the project is completed, which consists of photos of the project after completion.

The District has worked with landowners to implement a wide variety of projects to improve watershed health from farm best management practices to wildlife habitat enhancements.

Bridge Installed to Provide Fish Passage.

OWEB Restoration Grants – These are very competitive grants that are up to $250,000 in value and also require 25% matching contribution either in cash or in kind. This application process is much more intensive and applications are only accepted twice a year. The application is reviewed by a larger team and requires a team site visit. After the site visit the application is ranked amongst the other applications and recommended for funding or not. Once a grant is funded it needs to be completed in a two year time frame and requires five years of monitoring after the project is completed.

These are not the only funding opportunities through OWEB; please visit their website for more information about other opportunities for grants.

Please contact District Staff for more information about grant opportunities: (503) 472-6403