Le Sueur County Soil and Water Conservation District
NRCS NEWS RELEASE
United States Department of Agriculture • Natural Resources Conservation Service
181 W. Minnesota St • Le Center, MN 56057 • (507) 357-4908
Assistance Available to Agricultural Producers through the
Conservation Stewardship Program
WASHINGTON, Jan. 18,2018 - Agricultural producers wanting to enhance current conservation
efforts are encouraged to apply for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).
Through CSP, USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) helps private landowners build
their business while implementing conservation practices that help ensure the sustainability of their
entire operation. NRCS plans to enroll up to 10 million acres in CSP in 2018.
While applications for CSP are accepted year round, applications must be received by March 2, 2018 to
be considered for this funding period.
Through CSP, agricultural producers and forest landowners earn payments for actively managing,
maintaining, and expanding conservation activities like cover crops, ecologically-based pest
management, buffer strips, and pollinator and beneficial insect habitat - all while maintaining active
agriculture production on their land. CSP also encourages the adoption of cutting-edge technologies and
new management techniques such as precision agriculture applications, on-site carbon storage and
planting for high carbon sequestration rate, and new soil amendments to improve water quality.
Some of these benefits of CSP include:
-Improved cattle gains per acre;
-Increased crop yields;
-Wildlife population improvements; and
-Better resilience to weather extremes.
NRCS recently made several updates to the program to help producers better evaluate their conservation
options and the benefits to their operations and natural resources. New methods and software for
evaluating applications help producers see up front why they are or are not meeting stewardship
thresholds, and allow them to pick practices and enhancements that work for their conservation
objectives. These tools also enable producers to see potential payment scenarios for conservation early
in the process.
Producers interested in CSP are recommended to contact their local USDA service center or visit
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United States Department of Agriculture ∙ Natural Resources Conservation Service
For Immediate Release
Natural Resources Conservation Service
181 W. Minnesota St
Le Center, MN. 56057
Phone: (507) 357-4908
2019 EQIP Applications Due August 2018
To be considered for funding in fiscal year 2019, applications for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) will be due at local USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in August of 2018. EQIP applications can be made at any time throughout the year, the exact cutoff date will be released as soon as USDA officials make the final date decision.
“If you have any resource concerns on you property, stop in the office and visit with us” said Steve Breaker, Le Sueur USDA NRCS District Conservationist. “So NRCS is encouraging producers to come in sooner, rather than later to begin looking at these issues.”
Statewide EQIP practices include, but are not limited to: cover crops, erosion control structures, waste storage facilities, terracing, grade stabilization structures, nutrient management, prescribed grazing, No-Till, Strip till, well sealing and closure of animal waste impoundment facilities.
Heavy rains in 2016 might have exposed some previously unknown areas of erosion, according to Steve Breaker. There may be financial assistance through EQIP to help address some of these problem areas.
EQIP was originally established under the 1996 Farm Bill. It provides technical and financial assistance to landowners to voluntarily address soil, water and related natural resource concerns on private lands.