Outreach campaign targets Elgin County farmers
By Top Crop Manager
March 3, 2016, Ontario – Kettle Creek Conservation Authority (KCCA) wants to engage local landowners to take positive actions to improve soil health and water quality through the Great Lakes Agricultural Stewardship Initiative (GLASI).
“This is part of a broad outreach and education campaign to motivate positive agri-environmental action,” says Betsy McClure, KCCA’s stewardship program supervisor. “We want to inspire landowners to source out practical solutions for their properties that will reduce phosphorous loadings into local waterways but still provide them with the results they need for their farm business.”
KCCA is working in partnership with three other conservation authorities in Elgin County (Catfish Creek Conservation Authority, Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority, and Long Point Region Conservation Authority) along with the Elgin Federation of Agriculture, Elgin Soil and Crop Improvement Association, and local agronomists.
Planned activities across the county over the next two years include hosting cover crop workshops and tours, engaging producers in the Farmland Health Check-Up, developing interactive displays for local farm shows and rural events, developing a workshop focused on the implementation of erosion control structures for contractors, producers and certified crop advisors, and engaging producers through social media.
“We hope the project will draw attention to the phosphorus and sediment loading issues affecting Elgin County waterways and Lake Erie,” said McClure.
This outreach campaign fits nicely with the Elgin Clean Water Program that was established in 2012. “This project will allow us to get out on the landscape, raise awareness of the factors contributing to poor soil health and water quality across the County while the Elgin Clean Water Program is there for landowners as a source of funding to assist in implementing best management practices on the ground,” said McClure.