81 Farmers Get Environmental Leader Awards

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At the Iowa State fair, farmers proven to be good stewards of the land were awarded the Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Award.

Farmer John Clayton was one of the 81 recipients this year. He farms in Shelby, Cass, and Pottawattamie counties. After 30 years, he says it's encouraging to see conservation practices work like they're supposed to.

But Clayton has one big motivation in implementing no-till, buffer strips, and water ways, "We just want to keep it the way we started. We want to leave the land like we got it. So, that was our biggest motivation there."

Another recipient, Bob Downing from Warren County, says his farm's been in the family for many years and he wants to have it in good shape for when he passes it on.

He uses terraces, cover crops, waterways, and no-till. After 40 years, Downing's convinced he has less erosion, there's better yields, and he's proud to say it's his farm.

Downing has a few recommendation for younger farmers thinking of trying conservation practices, "Pay attention to details, don't let things go bad, keep the farm up, add to productivity, stop the erosion, water control is very important to us now. So it's going to be paramount that we get good water quality."

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