Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) is a competitive program that supports the development of new tools, approaches, practices, and technologies to further natural resource conservation on private lands. Through creative problem solving and innovation, CIG partners work to address our nation's water quality, air quality, soil health and wildlife habitat challenges, all while improving agricultural operations.
There are three annual Conservation Innovation Grants funding opportunities:
- National CIG Classic
National competition for projects that support the early-stage development and piloting of new tools, practices and technologies to further natural resource conservation on private lands.
- State CIG Classic
State-level competitions for projects that support early-stage development and piloting of new tools, practices and technologies to further natural resource conservation on private lands. While the overall goal and approach match those of CIG Classic, CIG state competitions fund projects that target state-identified conservation priorities. Each year, NRCS state offices may elect to administer their own CIG competitions. State CIG competitions are announced separately from national competitions.
- CIG On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials (On-Farm Trials)
National competition for projects that support more widespread adoption and evaluation of innovative conservation approaches in partnership with agricultural producers. On-Farm Trials Awardees provide technical assistance and incentive payments to producers to help compensate for risks associated with implementation of new conservation practices, systems and approaches. Awardees also evaluate the environmental, financial and social (to the extent possible) impacts of implementing innovative approaches. The Soil Health Demo Trial is a priority within the On-Farm Trials competition which focuses exclusively on implementation of conservation practices and systems that improve soil health.