NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Applications Due Nov. 20thWed, 30 Sep 2015 11:19:41 CDT
Gary O'Neill, USDA-NRCS State Conservationist for Oklahoma is reminding producers that the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) applications for 2016 are due in the local NRCS offices on November 20, 2015. Mr. O'Neill stated that "EQIP is available to producers and landowners active in agricultural or forest production engaged in livestock, agricultural, or forest production on eligible land that have a natural resource concern to be addressed."
EQIP provides financial assistance for eligible producers to help plan and implement conservation practices that address existing natural resource concerns and for opportunities to improve soil, water, plant, animal, air and related resources on agricultural land and non-industrial private forestland. An additional purpose of EQIP is to assist producers to meet Federal, State, Tribal, and local environmental regulations. There are several special initiatives in Oklahoma that provide funding assistance through EQIP to address state priority resource concerns associated with Organic Farming, Seasonal High Tunnels, Animal Feeding Operations (AFO) and Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO), Waste Management, Lagoon Closures, Irrigation Water Conservation, among others. Producers are encouraged to contact their local NRCS office for details about all of these and other programs that might be available to them.
O'Neill added "EQIP is an important Farm Bill conservation program that helps established farmers as well as beginning, historically underserved, and limited resource producers. This is another example of the work of NRCS in Oklahoma and our efforts together with our partners to adddress environmental conservation issues and strengthen Oklahoma's rural economy."
Eligible landowners and operators in Oklahoma need to apply at their local NRCS office by November 20, 2015 to be considered for the current ranking period. While local offices accept EQIP applications throughtout the year, NRCS evaluates applications during announced ranking periods. To be eligible for this enrollment period, producers need to have their applications submbitted to NRCS by the November 20th deadline.
Since there are changes that have been made in the EQIP Program under the new Farm Bill, it is important that producers and landowners learn more about this year's EQIP by viewing the NRCS website at: http://www.ok.nrcs.usda.gov or by calling or visiting a local NRCS field office.
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