The Intertribal Agriculture Council (IAC), a USSA member, and Farm Journal Foundation, a non-profit organization, are joining forces to help Native American cattle farmers and ranchers adopt climate-smart grazing. The partners have introduced a new program, supported by USDA’s Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities initiative, that will offer $1 million in direct payments, technical assistance and education to producers implementing conservation practices such as rotational grazing and planting of native grasses on their grazing lands. In addition, the program will make it easier for Native American cattle producers to participate in carbon and branded commodity markets and provide a route into U.S. Department of Agriculture conservation programs.

“We are at a critical moment with pressing climate issues that not only impact each of us globally but have meaningful consequences for the original land stewards of this country,” said Kari Jo Lawrence, Chief Executive Officer of IAC. “Our partnership with Farm Journal Foundation not only furthers IAC’s mission-driven work with Tribes and Tribal producers nationwide, but it also offers climate-smart benefits with increased opportunities for economic growth in Indian Country,” she added.

The three-year program will target both small and large-scale Native American producers in Florida, Montana and Oklahoma whose primary source of income is beef cattle farming.