Air Quality Initiative
The USDA-NRCS Air Quality Initiative is a subset of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program. As a participant of this voluntary program, you can be eligible to receive financial and technical assistance to help you plan and apply conservation practices that will preserve or improve air quality on your farm. Farmers in selected counties who are involved in livestock or crop production on eligible land, may apply for the program. Eligible land includes cropland, pasture, private non-industrial forestland and other farmland.
Air Quality Initiative applications will focus on addressing ozone, particulate matter, greenhouse gases and energy conservation concerns in New York.
Eligible Conservation Practices
View a list of eligible conservation practices.
The Air Quality Initiative is available in the following counties in New York State: Albany, Bronx, Chautauqua, Dutchess, Erie, Essex, Genesee, Greene, Jefferson, Kings, Livingston, Monroe, Montgomery, Nassau, New York, Niagara, Ontario, Orange, Orleans, Putnam, Rensselaer, Richmond, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Suffolk, Wayne and Westchester.
View map of counties eligible for 2012 Air Quality Initiative.
A current Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan (CNMP) is not required prior to applying for Waste Facility Cover, Methane Flare, and Solid/Liquid Waste Separation Facility, however, if you have a Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan, you will receive additional points when application is ranked.
EQIP applications are accepted year-round. NRCS has established two ranking periods for 2012:
Ranking Period 1: February 3, 2012
Ranking Period 2: March 30, 2012
To be considered for funding under a ranking period, each application must be received, determined eligible and evaluated by the deadlines listed above.
How to Apply for USDA-NRCS Conservation Programs
Learn what steps you will need to take to prepare for, and submit, your application to become a USDA-NRCS Conservation Program participant.
Learn more information on the criteria required to become an eligible EQIP applicant.
Ranking Tool Explained
New York NRCS uses a web based ranking tool for processing conservation program applications. This ranking tool uses national, state and locally developed questions to select applications which best optimize environmental benefits and achieve national, state and local priorities for conservation contracts. NRCS New York supports locally led conservation, in the delivery of conservation programs, by holding local working group meetings to provide input on natural resource concerns and priorities in each county. Information from these local working groups provides the basis for local ranking questions. All EQIP program applications receive a ranking score and ranked contracts are funded to the extent funding is available.
Financial Assistance Payment Rates, Program Information and Application
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For more information, contact your local USDA Service Center, or visit the USDA-NRCS Air Quality Initiative web site.