NRCS Announces National Water Quality Initiative Conservation in Utah
located in three priority watersheds will be able to participate
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
LAKE CITY, Ut., May 15, 2012 -- State Conservationist Dave Brown announced the
launch of a new National Water Quality Initiative committed to improving three
impaired waterways in Utah. USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
will manage the initiative by making funds available to farmers, ranchers and
forest landowners in the selected watersheds.
“The Water Quality Initiative will further NRCS’ partnership efforts to improve
water quality using voluntary actions on private lands,” Brown said. “This
initiative is a focused approach in areas facing significant natural resource
challenges. It bolsters the positive results of landscape conservation
initiatives NRCS and its partners already have underway in Utah.”
Through this effort, eligible producers in the South Fork of Chalk Creek (near
Coalville) and in Cutler Reservoir and the Pullum Hollow areas of the Bear River
(in Cache Valley) will invest in voluntary conservation actions to help provide
cleaner water for their neighbors and communities. The selected watersheds were
identified with help from state agencies, partners, and the NRCS State Technical
Lower Chalk Creek
Pullum Hollow-Bear River
& Cutler-Bear River
Using funds from the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, NRCS will provide
funding and advise to producers to install conservation practices such as cover
crops, filter strips and terraces in watersheds with impairments where the
federal investment can make a difference to improve water quality.
“American farmers are good stewards of the environment, especially when they
have the tools they need to protect or improve fish and wildlife habitat and
water quality,” said NRCS Chief Dave White. “We look forward to collaborating
with producers in key watersheds to help them have a positive impact on streams
with impaired water quality.”
Brown explained that the water quality conservation work on the two watersheds
along the Bear River in Cache County will focus on reduction of nutrient
loading, especially phosphorus, coming from animal feeding operations and
fertilizer application on surrounding farmland. The Lower Chalk Creek watershed
project, located near Coalville in Summit County, will seek to improve
Bonneville Cutthroat trout habitat by removing barriers to fish movement.
Irrigation efficiency and management practices will also be applied to help
improve water quality along Chalk Creek.
NRCS accepts applications for financial assistance on a continuous basis
throughout the year. Remember to check with your local NRCS office to see if you
are located in a selected watershed. All applications for funding consideration,
during this fiscal year, must be received by June 15, 2012. This summer, NRCS
will notify all applicants of the results and begin developing contracts with
Since 1935, NRCS’s nationwide conservation delivery system works with private
landowners to put conservation on the ground based on specific, local
conservation needs, while accommodating state and national interests. For more
information about NRCS’ programs, initiatives and services in Utah, visit us
online at www.ut.nrcs.usda.gov.
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The Natural Resources Conservation Service provides leadership
in a partnership effort to help people
conserve, maintain, and improve our natural resources and environment.
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