Iowa Systems Approach to Conservation Drainage RCPP
The Iowa Systems Approach to Conservation Drainage (ISACD) improves both farm profitability and sustainability on some of the most intensively drained farm land in Iowa. This project is co-led by IAWA and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.
The ISACD uses in-field practices like cover crops and no-till in tandem with edge-of-field practices like saturated buffers and bioreactors to improve water quality, reduce flood risk and greenhouse gas emissions, and protect source water. The benefits from the practices in this project don’t stop there. Adding these practices can also improve farmers’ bottom lines through drought resilience, reduced erosion, and improved soil health.
The ISACD is a $33 million dollar project. USDA-NRCS is providing $10 million of that. The majority of the funding helps with covering the costs of installing practices, with some of the funding going towards education and outreach.
This is one of four projects IAWA is involved with in the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). RCPP projects drive innovation in conservation efforts by bringing public and private entities and dollars together to target priority watersheds and landscapes.