LYONS, NEBRASKA – In a win for rural communities, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 on Friday. Included in the package is funding for working lands conservation and investments in clean energy for rural communities.
“This package will positively impact rural people across the country,” said Johnathan Hladik, policy director for the Center for Rural Affairs.
Included in the Inflation Reduction Act is $3.25 billion for the Conservation Stewardship Program and $8.45 billion for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program through fiscal year 2026. This funding will provide farmers interested in implementing conservation practices a better chance at receiving funding.
“We know these working lands conservation programs have been severely underfunded and oversubscribed,” Hladik said. “This funding will address the backlog of farmers who have applied for financial assistance and not received a contract due to lack of program resources.”
The Inflation Reduction Act also provides significant investments in the energy sector by allocating roughly $30 billion in grant and loan programs for state and electric utilities to accelerate the transition to clean electricity. The package contains a special focus on rural electric cooperatives.
“These investments in localized, renewable energy will result in energy cost savings for consumers and increased reliability of the electricity sector,” Hladik said.