Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative
The Agricultural Act of 2014 establishes the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP).
It repeals CCPI. For more information on RCPP, please visit the RCPP web page.
The Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative (CCPI) is a voluntary conservation initiative that enables the use of certain conservation programs along with resource of eligible partners to provide financial and technical assistance to owners and operators of agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands.
After announcement, eligible producers located in an approved project area may submit an application for any of the following available programs, which may be approved for assistance:
Under CCPI, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) enters into partnership agreements with eligible entities that want to enhance conservation outcomes on agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands. The Secretary of Agriculture has delegated the authority for CCPI to the NRCS Chief.
As allowed by the 2008 Farm Bill (2008 Act), NRCS may make Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP), and Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) program resources available to owners and operators of agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands who are located in an approved CCPI project area.
As authorized by Congress, this is not a grant program to partners. This is a program whereby partners with approved projects will enter into multi-year agreements with NRCS to help enhance conservation outcomes on agricultural lands and private nonindustrial private forest lands. One purpose of CCPI is to leverage resources of certain Federal government programs along with services and resources of non-Federal partners to implement natural resource conservation practices.
Proposals submitted by eligible partners are evaluated and competitively ranked for consideration of NRCS program to support the project. The RFP published to the Federal Register outlines the process and requirements partners must use to submit proposals and CCPI requirements. The RFP also provides details regarding which programs are offered and funding availability each fiscal year.
Specific program information may be found at each of the programs websites: Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP) Conservation Stewardship Program(CSP)
Federally recognized Indian Tribes, State and local units of government, producer associations, farmer cooperatives, institutions of higher education, and nongovernmental organizations (NGO) with a history of working cooperatively with producers. Refer to the RFP for more details regarding partner eligibility, including specific requirements for NGOs. Individual producers are not eligible to submit a partnership proposal.
Owners and operators of agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands are eligible to apply for program benefits offered through CCPI. In order for a producer to be considered for financial assistance through a CCPI partner agreement, the land associated with a program application must be located within an approved CCPI project area. Only producers who are eligible for EQIP, WHIP or CSP may receive financial assistance through these programs. When announced and available refer to Fact Sheets and visit the NRCS program website in the state where located for information how and when to apply to the EQIP, WHIP and CSP programs. For more detail regarding eligibility and application requirements contact your local NRCS field office.
For CCPI, the 2008 Act requires that 6 percent of the funds for EQIP and WHIP and 6 percent of the allowed acres for the CSP programs be reserved for support of producer contracts approved under this authority. Information and conditions for the Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative (CCPI) and potential funding available can be found in notice of request for proposals (RFP) published in the Federal Register and posted to this web site.
If funds are available, NRCS will make Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP) and Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) benefits available to owners and operators of agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands who participate in approved CCPI project areas. Please note that the amount of financial assistance provided to support prior year approved projects and new proposals approved through the current year RFP will change each fiscal year depending upon evaluation of partner performance, appropriations and agency priorities. Each fiscal year, NRCS will announce the amount of CCPI financial assistance available.
Partner Proposal Submission
Eligible partners may submit proposals per the requirements of the RFP. Through a competitive process, the proposal will be evaluated and ranked with all other current fiscal year proposals. After evaluation, if the partner proposal is selected for funding, NRCS will develop a partnership agreement which will outline the general requirements of NRCS and the partner. Information about the competitive evaluation process is contained in the published RFP.
2011 CCPI and CBWI-CCPI Projects
National CCPI Selected Projects
CBWI-CCPI Recommended Projects
Nationally Approved CCPI Projects From Previous Years
Fiscal Year 2010
Fiscal Year 2009
2011 Cooperative Conservation Partnership - Chesapeake Bay Watershed (CCPI - CBWI)
The CCPI-CBW provides technical and financial help to owners and operators of agricultural and non-industrial private forest lands in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. This help will support conservation objectives in the watershed. The conservation objectives are to control erosion and reduce sediment and nutrient levels in surface and ground water.
The State Conservationist or Chief will enter into multi-year partnership agreements with the selected, eligible partners which may include:
State and local governments
Federally recognized Indian Tribes
institutions of higher education
and nongovernmental organizations with a history of working cooperatively with producers.
NRCS will enter into partnership agreements with the partners whose applications are selected to provide financial and technical assistance to owners and operators of agricultural and nonindustrial private forest lands to address priority natural resource concerns in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.
Eligible States and Special Priorities
The following states are eligible to apply for CBW-CCPI partnerships: Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia.
Special priority consideration will be given to applications/projects in the watersheds of the Susquehanna, Shenandoah, Potomac (North and South), and Patuxent Rivers. Special priority consideration will be given to applications / projects in designated Hydrologic Unit Coordinate (12-digit HUC) priority watersheds.
Partner Application Process
The proposals will be evaluated through a competitive process and in accordance with the criteria established in the RFP. After the Chief approves and announces the proposals selected, agricultural producers and nonindustrial private forest landowners (NIPFs) within the approved project areas may submit applications directly to NRCS for one or both of the following programs that are approved for the project: EQIP or WHIP.
This is not a grant program, and all Federal funds made available through this request for proposals will be paid directly to producers through program contract agreements. No technical assistance funding may be provided to the partner through the CBWI-CPI partnership agreement.
However, if requested by a partner whose proposal has been selected, the State Conservationist may consider entering into a separate contribution agreement with the partner to provide funding for delivery of technical services to help agricultural producers and NIPFs participate in an approved project. Individual agricultural producers and NIPFs are not eligible for CBWI-CPI partnership agreements. No Federal CBWI-CPI funding may be used to cover administrative expenses of partners. Administrative activities include any indirect or direct costs relating to submitting or implementing the project proposal.