SDSU awarded $1.2 million grant for “climate-smart” projects across the state

Agriculture grant designed to help producers with 'smart' programs.
Published: Apr. 13, 2023 at 9:39 AM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - TThe U.S. Department of Agriculture recently announced a grant of more than $1 million was awarded to South Dakota State University to fund “Climate Smart” projects across the state.

By implementing climate-smart practices into farming, the agriculture team at SDSU hopes to change the way farmers profit while producing a smaller carbon footprint.

The project entitled “Overcoming Climate Smart Adoption Barriers by Demonstrating the Value of Linking No-Tillage, Cover Crops, and Enhanced N Management into a Single System,” is set to implement smart farming techniques - like soil health practices, no-till farming, and planting cover crops.

The grant would allow farmers on the Eastern side of the state to have the same access to resources that farmers on the Western side have. By implementing these practices, the economic worth of farms increases.

“So what we’re proposing and what we’d like to do is to demonstrate that we can adopt these practices, move them East and then reduce the economic benefits that our Western farmers are obtaining in the Eastern part of the state,” says SDSU professor, David Clay.

Globally, more people buy products produced with a net zero carbon footprint, so the new farming practices would decrease this from farmers, allowing them a larger profit in the long run.

“The people that are buying products will pay premium prices for our agricultural products whether they be for beef or whether they be for ethanol or whatever products we’re going to be producing,” Clay finishes.

Getting premium prices for those products allows a portion of the profits to go directly back to farmers.