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Vermont Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG)

Grants to Vermont Non-Federal Entities and
Individuals for Innovative Conservation Technology

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) - Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) - Vermont

Deadline Date:

07/29/19 4:00 PM EST Receipt


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Grants ranging from $10,000 to $75,000 to Vermont non-federal entities and individuals for the development and application of innovative environmental conservation strategies related to agricultural production. Funding is intended to enable both private and public entities to adopt and transfer promising technologies that address pressing concerns in natural resources conservation. The purpose of CIG is to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies, while leveraging the Federal investment in environmental enhancement and protection in conjunction with agricultural production.

CIG projects are expected to lead to the transfer of conservation technologies, management systems, and innovative approaches (such as market-based systems) to agricultural producers, into NRCS technical manuals and guides, or to the private sector. CIG generally funds pilot projects, field demonstrations, and on-farm conservation research. On-farm conservation research is defined as an investigation conducted to answer a specific applied conservation question using a statistically valid design while employing farm-scale equipment on farms, ranches or private forest lands.

CIG funds the development and field testing, on-farm research and demonstration, evaluation, or implementation of:
- Approaches to incentivizing conservation adoption, including market-based and conservation finance approaches; and
- Conservation technologies, practices, and systems.

Projects or activities under CIG must:
- Use a technology or approach that was studied sufficiently to indicate a high probability for success;
- Demonstrate, evaluate, and verify the effectiveness, utility, affordability, and usability of natural resource conservation technologies and approaches in the field;
- Adapt and transfer conservation technologies, management, practices, systems, approaches, and incentive systems to improve performance and encourage adoption;
- Introduce proven conservation technologies and approaches to a geographic area or agricultural sector where that technology or approach is not currently in use.

The CIG priorities for FY 2019 are:
1. Water Quality
2. Soil Health
3. Forestry and Wildlife Habitat

For information about these priority areas, see page 4 of the funding announcement document in Supporting Documents below.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 181282

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

Expected Number of Awards: 10

Estimated Size of Grant:

The funding floor for a single award is $10,000. The funding ceiling for a single award is $75,000.

Term of Contract:

Projects may be between one and three years in duration. Applicants should plan their projects based on a project start date of September 30, 2019.


  • City or township governments
  • County governments
  • Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)
  • Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
  • See RFP and/or Grant Guidelines for full eligibility
  • Single entities
  • Small businesses
  • State governments

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

All non-Federal entities (NFE) and individuals, with the exception of Federal agencies, are eligible to apply for projects carried out in Vermont. Individuals and entities may submit more than one application and may receive more than one award.

CIG funds may not be used to pay any of the following costs unless otherwise permitted by law, or approved in writing by the Authorized Departmental Officer in advance of incurring such costs:
1) Costs above the amount of funds authorized for the project;
2) Costs incurred prior to the effective date of the grant;
3) Costs which lie outside the scope of the approved project and amendments thereto;
4) Entertainment costs, regardless of their apparent relationship to project objectives;
5) Compensation for injuries to persons, or damage to property arising out of project activities;
6) Consulting services performed by a Federal employee during official duty hours when such consulting services result in the payment of additional compensation to the employee; and
7) Renovation or refurbishment of research or related spaces, the purchase or installation of fixed equipment in such spaces, and the planning, repair, rehabilitation, acquisition, or construction of buildings or facilities.

This list is not exhaustive. Individuals applying for a CIG award may not include any indirect costs in the proposed budget.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications must be received by 4 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on July 29, 2019. NRCS anticipates announcing CIG selections through a USDA press release no later than September 2019.

Applications must be submitted through In addition, a PDF of the complete application must be emailed to Joe Buford and Sandra Primard (see details, below). Please allow sufficient time to register in, and for possible system delays.

Non-federal entities must obtain a DUNS and register in SAM prior to registering in
For SAM:

CIG recipients must provide a non-federal funding match or cost-share amount at least equal to the amount of federal funding requested. Applications that do not include cost-sharing will be ineligible for award. Cost sharing may be achieved with contributions of cash, services, materials, equipment, or third-party in-kind contributions.

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Workspace information:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Register for

Email a PDF of the application to:

Joe Buford
802-951-6796 ext 244

Sandra Primard

If you encounter issues with, please contact the help desk at (800) 518-4726 or

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
356 Mountain View Drive, Suite 105
Colchester, VT 05446

CFDA Number:


Funding or Pin Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Vermont

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