IASCD Responds to Article on Rural Idaho

On December 25, 2011, the Idaho Statesman ran an informative article discussing how farms are helping rural communities in Idaho. The IASCD Board of Directors read the article, and felt one piece was missing: the role of the soil and water conservation districts.

In response, the Board drafted a Letter to the Editor. Our letter was published on January 5, 2012. You can click here to read the letter, or simply read it below.

Conservation districts play an integral role
January 5, 2012

We read with great interest Mr. Rocky Barker’s Christmas Day article on rural Idaho. The only missing piece was the work Idaho’s 50 individual soil and water conservation districts do to improve rural economies and preserve Idaho’s natural resources.

For example, Mr. Barker pointed out the rising cost of fuel, fertilizer and energy. Districts work each day with farmers, ranchers and private landowners to help save each of these resources. A district can work with a landowner to install a pivot irrigation system, cutting a farmer’s energy bill dramatically. Buying the pivot from a local business can inject $80,000 into the local economy.

Local governments have been working with districts for years to improve wildlife habitat, restore forests and rebuild streambanks. Local entities know that districts are best suited to work with the land and private landowners, as districts are codified in state statute to be the primary entities for natural resource protection.

Idaho’s soil and water conservation districts are an integral part of Idaho’s rural landscape and vital players in helping our farmers and ranchers protect our precious natural resources.

IASCD President


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