Great Lakes Restoration Initiative
NRCS is assisting with the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative by focusing technical and financial assistance on priority watersheds. Private landowners and tribes within these watersheds are encouraged to utilize this assistance to implement conservation activities that will benefit the Great Lakes ecosystem.
Through GLRI, financial assistance is available from existing NRCS programs. A working group including NRCS-Michigan staff and conservation partners developed a plan that identified priority watersheds and conservation practices to most effectively address resource concerns affecting the Great Lakes. The resource concerns identified include non-point source pollution from agricultural activities, degradation of wildlife and aquatic habitats, and terrestrial invasive species. High priority watersheds were determined using existing watershed assessments and priorities determined by the Environmental Protection Agency.
A sign-up is underway for conservation financial assistance available through GLRI for designated watersheds in Michigan. Financial assistance is available to agricultural producers for implementing a wide variety of conservation activities designed to improve water quality and wilidlife habitat around the Great Lakes. The 2014 sign-up includes three priority areas including; phosphorus reduction, wildlife habitat creation/improvement, and general natural resource conservation. Eligibility areas and practice lists for each priority area are listed below. Some watersheds are included in more than one priority area.
Financial assistance for GLRI is provided through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program. Payment rates for GLRI are the same as for general EQIP which are posted on the NRCS-Michigan EQIP Web page.
Farmers have until Aug. 8, 2014, to apply for the funding. Maps of areas eligible for GLRI conservation assistance are linked below along with a list of conservation activities eligible for financial assistance.
Map of Phosphorus Reduction Priority Area
Eligible Phosphorus Reduction Practices
Map of Wildlife Priority Watersheds
Eligible Wildlife Practices
Map of General EQIP Area
Eligible EQIP Practices