The U.S. Department of Agriculture is putting $800,000 into a water quality preservation project in central Iowa through a Conservation Innovation Grant. Curt Sindergard of Rolfe, president of the Iowa Soybean Association, says his organization is spearheading the project.

He says the money from the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service is for expanded research in the watershed programs. Speaking in Webster City, Sindergard says the role of the I-S-A is to provide leadership in watershed planning and farm management evaluation. He says the project will involve several Iowa watersheds, including the large one in the Boone area.

Sindergard says they’ve been doing research there for a few years and it needs to be expanded as farmers want more detailed information to coordinate with other watershed programs. Sindergard said the grant money that’ll be used by the Iowa Soybean Association will also be used in other areas, too. He says a lot of it is for technical advice and the ability to expand the programs from the current base for water monitoring, nutrient management and other elements.

Other collaborators in the project include: the Boone River Watershed Association, the Nature Conservancy, Des Moines Water Works, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Iowa State University’s Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Pioneer Hi-Bred International. See the soybean association’s website for more information.