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Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)

Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)

Last Modified: 08/08/2012

The Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) is a voluntary program which offers financial incentives to private landowners to enhance and protect water quality for drinking by filtering runoff, stabilizing streambanks and shading stream channels. Additional goals are to improve wildlife habitat and preserve the diversity of Oklahoma's natural resources by increasing the amount, quality and connectivity of protected riparian corridors.

The Spavinaw Lake and Illinois River/Lake Tenkiller is the first CREP project in Oklahoma.  The USDA has announced a $20.6 million cooperative conservation partnership with the state of Oklahoma to create up to 8,500 acres of riparian buffers and 500 acres of filter strips in the watersheds of the project area in parts of Adair, Cherokee, Delaware, Mayes and Sequoyah counties. 

Fact Sheet on the Oklahoma CREP

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Spavinaw Lake and Illinois River/Lake Tenkiller CREP Fact Sheet April 2007 (PDF; 235 KB)

Key Provisions

  • The Farm Service Agency (FSA) will administer the program.
  • The State of Oklahoma will help identify eligible producers with appropriate land for enrollment in the Oklahoma CREP.
  • The Oklahoma Conservation Commission, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and/or Technical Service Providers (TSP) will provide technical assistance for planning applicable conservation practices.
  • Participants will receive annual rental payments and other incentives for voluntarily enrolling land into contracts.
  • Participants will receive a one-time Practice Incentive Payment and a one-time Signing Incentive Payment.
  • Participants will also receive 50 percent of the allowable reimbursable costs of establishing eligible practices (filter strips and riparian buffers).

Eligibility

To participate in CREP, landowners must meet the following basic eligibility requirements:

  • Land must be cropland or marginal pastureland eligible for CRP as determined by the FSA county committees;
  • Land must have sites where filter strip and riparian buffer practices are needed as determined by NRCS or TSP;
  • Land must be located within the CREP project area.

CREP Conservation Practices

Eligible conservation practices for Oklahoma CREP include:

  • CP21 (Filter Strips) up to 500 acres; and
  • CP22 (Riparian Buffer) (Marginal Pastureland and Cropland) up to 8,500 acres. Participants must implement this practice in accordance with FSA CRP National Directives, except that the maximum average buffer width cannot exceed 300 feet.
  • Additionally, CRP's "infeasible-to-farm" practice and payment provisions apply to cropland offers/contracts. These provisions allow CRP applicants with cropland offers/contracts to add small amounts of acreage that are impractical to farm to the CRP contract.

Sign-Up and Contract Duration

USDA will accept offers for CRP contracts under this CREP on a first come/ first served basis until the 9,000 acre goal is achieved or until the program funding expires, whichever comes first.  Landowners enrolling in Oklahoma CREP will sign 14 or 15 year CRP contracts with USDA and may also enter into longer term easements with the State of Oklahoma. Landowners or operators may visit or call their local FSA office in order to determine if their land qualifies for these CRP practices:

  • Adair County, Cherokee County, and Sequoyah County 918-456-1924 ext. 2
  • Delaware County 918-542-4576 ext. 2
  • Mayes County 918-825-3673 ext. 2

For further information contact your local NRCS Field Service Center.

Related Web Sites with Links to CREP Information

Contact

Gina Crowder Levesque
Coordinator - CREP Program Manager
Oklahoma Conservation Commission
1009 S. Muskogee Avenue
Tahlequah, OK  74464-4733
Phone: 918-456-1919
Email: Gina Levesque