Federal Funds for Conservation Ag
USDA News Release
As a Molokai farmer or rancher, you may be eligible for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) most common Farm Bill Programs. These include the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program, Agricultural Management Assistance Program, and Conservation Stewardship Program. Contact the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Ho`olehua to find out if you are eligible for this funding. Applications for the first ranking period of 2014 are due at NRCS offices by close of business on Jan. 17.
“We are encouraging farmers and ranchers to utilize the federal funding available to help improve conservation on private land,” said Shirley Nakamura, NRCS Assistant Director for Programs.
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) is a voluntary program that provides financial and technical assistance to agricultural producers through contracts up to a maximum term of 10 years in length. These contracts provide financial assistance to help plan and implement conservation practices that address natural resource concerns and for opportunities to improve soil, water, plant, animal, air and related resources on agricultural land and non-industrial private forestland. In addition, a purpose of EQIP is to help producers meet federal, state, tribal and local environmental regulations.
The Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP) is a voluntary program for conservation-minded landowners who want to develop and improve wildlife habitat on agricultural land, nonindustrial private forest land, and Indian land.
The Agricultural Management Assistance (AMA) provides financial and technical assistance to agricultural producers to voluntarily address issues such as water management, water quality, and erosion control by incorporating conservation into their farming operations.
Conservation Stewardship Program is offered in all 50 states, and the Pacific and Caribbean areas through continuous sign-ups. The program provides many conservation benefits including improvement of water and soil quality, wildlife habitat enhancements and adoption of conservation activities that address the effects of climate change. Eligible lands include cropland, pastureland, rangeland, nonindustrial private forest land and agricultural land under the jurisdiction of an Indian tribe.
For more information, call the Molokai- Hoolehua Service Center at 808-567-6868 x 104.