NRCS Accepting Applications for Animal Waste TreatmentTue, 09 Dec 2014 16:39:11 CST
Gary O’Neill, State Conservationist for Oklahoma USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has announced the opportunity for livestock producers to make application under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) for treatment of resource concerns for confined animal feeding operations, including poultry. This is a statewide program for fiscal year 2015. Subject to availability, Oklahoma will set aside funding for financial assistance to apply conservation practices and management activities for the treatment of water and air quality resource concerns relative to animal waste management. O’Neill said, “Applicants will compete statewide for the EQIP confined animal resource concern funds. Successful applications will be selected from a statewide list of applications with high priority resource concerns as addressed in the application rating criteria.” O’Neill added, “AFO/CAFO Animal Waste Management is only one of several initiatives that are available under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). Other programs include: Irrigation, Lagoon Closure, Energy, National Water Quality Initiative, and the Organic Initiative.” Applications for all of these programs will be due January 16, 2015 at the local NRCS offices.
The Farm Bill allowed the continued use of EQIP funds for the confined animal feeding operations (AFO/CAFO). The State Technical Committee requested a statewide application process to address the potential water quality impacts of these operations to the rivers and streams of the state. This program allows those operations to apply for EQIP financial assistance for animal waste storage, treatment, and utilization for edible beef, dairy, poultry, and swine operations that are maintaining or reducing the size of their operation with a lesser priority for expanding facilities. New facilities of any type are ineligible. All applications will be required to develop, implement, and maintain a comprehensive nutrient management plan (CNMP) during the EQIP contract period.
NRCS will accept applications for participation in the statewide AFO/CAFO EQIP Program on a continous basis, however, only applications received by January 16, 2015, will be ranked and considered during this initial selection period. Evaluated applications will be grouped and selected for funding from a statewide pool of applications, until the funding allocation is obligated.
Unsuccessful applications will be maintained for future funding consideration if the applicant chooses to remain on the waiting list. Successful applications with high priority resource concerns will be contacted to develop contracts to obligate the current funding allocation. Individual confined animal feeding operations that have high priority resource concerns and are interested in participation may learn more by viewing the NRCS website by clicking here and may apply and receive additional information by visiting their local NRCS Field Office. Applications received will be evaluated according to the statewide ranking criteria as workload permits and reviewed for potential funding as program allocations become available.
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