1/13/2017 12:00:00 AM
CONSERVATION STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM SIGN-UP ENDS FEBRUARY 3
NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE HURON, SD. January
13, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resources
Conservation Service (NRCS) has been accepting and processing applications since
November for enrollment in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), the
nation’s largest conservation program.
NRCS has made several updates to the program this year
to help producers better evaluate their conservation options and the benefits to
their operations and natural resources. New methods and software for evaluating
applications will 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 new tools also allow producers to
see potential payment scenarios for conservation early in the process.
While applications are continuously accepted, the
deadline for signing an application for consideration in Fiscal Year 2017 is Friday,
February 3, 2017. People interested in
the additional opportunities the updated CSP will offer can find information on
the new CSP portal, located at http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/csp. This one-stop shop, which provides information to
help producers determine whether CSP is right for them, will be continually
updated as more information becomes available. Changes that producers can
expect to see include nearly double the enhancements and conservation practices
offered and better reporting tools to tell producers the results of their
conservation efforts on their land.
In South Dakota alone, more than 6.8 million acres are
actively enrolled in CSP. “This program provides farming and ranching
operations financial assistance to implement conservation activities on their
farms and ranches,” explains Jessica Michalski, SD CSP Coordinator. “Since this
program began in 2010, these activities have been shown to increase
sustainability and productivity of SD agricultural operations while improving our
state’s soil health, water quality, wildlife habitat, and other important natural
Producers interested in the CSP should visit their
local USDA Service Center to submit an application.