EarthDance Partners with Missouri CRCL Project

EarthDance is proud to be one of 14 partnering organizations in the Missouri Climate-Resilient Crop & Livestock (CRCL) Project. Part of the USDA’s new Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities Program, the CRCL Project will fund Missouri farmers in newly implementing specific practices that support climate resilient crop and livestock systems.

Funding opportunities have been created within the project to specifically benefit urban and/or small-scale growers through the “Climate-Smart Fieldscape” program, which include a $10,000 payment for implementation and maintenance of climate-smart practices (over a 3-year contract).

“We’re excited to help get the word out about this new, Missouri-wide project, as it’s a great way to move from conversation to action to financially support more farmers in implementing climate smart solutions,” EarthDance Founder and CEO Molly Rockamann said.

EarthDance and other partnering organizations have already played an important role in shaping the program. “We were able to ensure the program includes more small-scale urban operations, rather than focusing solely on larger scale farms on a per-acre basis.”

Over the next 3 years, thanks to funding made possible by the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities Grant, University of Missouri’s Center for Regenerative Agriculture will share $25 million dollars with Missouri farmers, with a focus on supporting beginner and underserved farmers, who implement one of these specific climate-smart practices:

  • Silvopasture – Incentive payment for livestock producers to plant trees on pastures, expanding Missouri woodland area and providing shade for livestock
  • Climate Smart Fieldscapes – Program for small and underserved farmers to implement climate-smart fieldscapes, comprised of at least three stacked climate-smart practices, with a plan for your fieldscape to serve as a demonstration site
  • Nutrition Management using a 4R Approach and Split-nitrogen Application – Incentive payment to implement appropriate nutrient management practices that include use of the 4R nutrient stewardship approach, and split-nitrogen application (right source, right rate, right time, and right place) which helps to align the economic, environmental, and social components of nutrient management stewardship
  • Regenerative Grazing – Incentive payment to implement regenerative grazing with biodiverse forage species, managed intensive grazing, and low-cost watering and fencing approaches
  • Cover Crop Grazing – Combine livestock and row crops by allowing livestock to graze cover cropped fields
  • Soy-Rye Cover Crops – Explore a proven system by planting cereal rye in the fall before a soybean crop
  • Diverse Cover Crops – Add biodiversity with one of two fall-planted mixes before a non-legume cash crop such as corn, sorghum, or cotton.
  • Late Termination – Allow additional spring growth of cover crops by delaying termination until at least May 1

Learn more and apply on the MU Center for Regenerative Agriculture website. You can also learn more by attending the CRCL and Climate Smart Fieldscapes Program webinar on December 12, 2023, from 6-8pm CST. In the webinar, you’ll also learn about the cost-share programs offered by NRCS (Natural Resource Conservation Service) that are designed for small farms. An optional short presentation on using cover crops in vegetable production systems will follow the funding opportunities presentation.