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Hawaii CREP

Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program Logo

The Hawai’i CREP is an incentive program to encourage farmers and ranchers to voluntarily remove environmentally sensitive lands from agricultural production. Once enrolled, landowners are asked to commit to a 15 year contract where they will enact conservation practices to best manage their natural resources on and off site.

The partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the State of Hawai’i, Division of Forestry and Wildlife provides landowners financial and technical assistance to successfully carry out the conservation goals of this program.

Goals

The environmental goals of Hawai’i CREP:

  • Reduce sediment and nutrient runoff.
  • Increase coral reef cover and coral diversity on reefs.
  • Improve wildlife and plant habitats of threatened and endangered species.
  • Reforestation of native riparian buffers as well as rare and declining native habitats.
  • Increase groundwater recharge through the planting of trees in upland pastures.
  • Reduction in and control of invasive species in watersheds.

Benefits

Hawai’i CREP will help restore forested, previously forested and degraded agricultural land.
The program:

  • improves wildlife habitat by creation of riparian forest buffer corridors and expansion of habitat for rare species of Hawaii.
  • improves water quality and quantity by reducing soil runoff, increasing ground absorption, improving wetlands, and reducing stream sedimentation and nutrient loading.
  • enhances coral reef habitat and diversity of aquatic species by decreasing run-off from the upland environments.

Eligibility

Landowners and lessees may be eligible to enroll land into Hawai’i CREP if:

  • The land was owned or leased for at least 1-year prior to enrollment.
  • The land is physically and legally capable of agriculture production and is in need of some level of restoration.
  • The landowner/lessee meets the Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) limitation.

Note: This limitation may be waived for projects that are of environmental significance or if producer’s income levels are 2/3 or more from farming, ranching or forestry operations.

The USDA Farm Service Agency can assist with determination on other specific eligibility requirements.

Available Practices

The following national CRP conservation practices will be made available for eligible land focusing on water resource improvement:

The following national CRP conservation practices will be made available for eligible land focusing on forest restoration:

Sign-up and Financial Incentive

Sign-up for Hawai’i CREP is continuous and is available for enrollment on Hawai’i island, Maui, Lana’i, Moloka’i, O’ahu, and Kaua’i.

Hawai’i CREP participants will be eligible for the following types of financial incentives:

  • Signing Incentive Payment: A one-time payment of $100/acre.
    Note: Subject to annual payment limitation of $50,000.
  • Federal Annual Rental Payment: Ranging from $43/acre/yr. to $225/acre/yr. based on your land type.
    Note: Subject to annual payment limitation of $50,000.
  • State Annual Rental Payment: $17/acre/yr.; no payment limitation.
  • Cost-share payments: A payment for up to 50% of eligible reimbursable costs for established practices; no payment limitation.
  • Practice Incentive Payment: A one-time additional payment equal to 40% of the eligible cost share reimbursable for the cost of established practices.
    Note: Subject to annual payment limitation of $50,000.
  • Mid-contract Management Payment: A payment available 3 times during your contract and up to $150/acre.

The State may also be available to assist with conservation easements within CREP watersheds.

Program Information

For more information, contact any of the Hawai’i CREP partners:

  • USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA)
    Phone: (808) 441-2704 Fax: (808) 441-2705
  • USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
    Phone: (808) 541-2600 Fax: (808) 541-1135
  • State of Hawai’i Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW)
    Phone: (808) 587-4167 Fax: (808) 587-0166

Contacts

Jessica Newpher
Resource Specialist
Phone: (808) 541-2600 x 132
Email: Jessica.Newpher@hi.usda.gov