ALUS Southwest Iowa Loess Bluffs
Where Agriculture and Nature Meet
Rideau Valley Conservation Authority bilingual logo

ALUS Southwest Iowa Loess Bluffs (ALUS SWI) was initiated by Seth Watkins and Cara Morgan at Golden Hills Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) to be the first US community to adopt the ALUS program, Canada’s leading agricultural ecosystem services program. The offers farmers and ranchers in Southwest Iowa opportunities to produce new nature and ecosystem services, while addressing local rural environmental challenges related to soil health, water quality and wildlife habitat.

ALUS is a Canadian charitable organization delivering the only turnkey farmer-led community program that rewards farmers for creating, restoring, managing and maintaining nature-based projects on their lands.

Iowa is one of the top ten agricultural and cattle producing states in the United States, with the landscape historically being primarily tallgrass prairie. Today, only 0.1% of Iowa’s prairie remains and most of the remnants are found in western Iowa. Creating tallgrass prairie along field edges and on marginal agricultural land, and incorporating prairie management into cattle grazing practices, is one of the areas of focus for ALUS SWI.

ALUS communities work directly with farmers and ranchers to create, manage and maintain new acres of nature that best suit their farm operations and address local environmental challenges. This includes grassland restoration, but also projects like wetland restoration, tree and shrub planting and on-field regenerative agriculture practices.

Guided by a local Partnership Advisory Committee (PAC), which is majority comprised of local agricultural producers, the ALUS model ensures that projects are determined at the local level to address the community’s environmental and economic priorities. 

Get in touch with ALUS SAW-Carrot River’s program coordinator to find out more.

ALUS SWI Coordinator

Cara Morgan

712 South Highway Street
P.O. Box 189
​Oakland, IA 51560
[email protected]

Get in Touch

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