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Environmental Quality Incentives Program

Environmental Quality Incentives Program


USDA seeks public comment on new rule for Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

....Read the News Release....

Information on this page:

  • EQIP Signup Opportunities in Oregon
  • Benefits
  • Technical and Financial Assistance
  • Participant Responsibilities
  • Socially Disadvantaged, Beginning, and Limited Resource Farmers/Ranchers, Military Veteran Farmers
  • FY 2015 EQIP Practice Payment List
  • EQIP Eligibility
  • Funding Selection and Priorities
  • For More Information
  • Contacts
  • Archived EQIP Information
  • Introduction

    The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) is a voluntary conservation program that helps agricultural producers in a manner that promotes agricultural production and environmental quality as compatible goals. Through EQIP, agricultural producers receive financial and technical assistance to implement structural and management conservation practices that optimize environmental benefits on working agricultural land.

    EQIP Signup Opportunities in Oregon

    Those who are interested in EQIP should work with the local NRCS office to identify and plan the conservation measures you want on your land. Those who have previously developed a conservation plan with NRCS will already have the conservation planning step completed. Those who consider applying for EQIP for the first time should schedule a meeting with NRCS to discuss their options before moving forward. Local NRCS conservationists will help you develop a conservation plan, identify conservation measures and pursue funding through one of the EQIP signup options available in Oregon.

    Benefits

    Eligible program participants receive financial and technical assistance to implement conservation practices, or activities  like conservation planning, that address natural resource concerns  on their land. Payments are made to participants after conservation practices and activities identified in an EQIP plan of operations are implemented. Contracts can last up to ten years in duration.

    Accepting Applications

    EQIP applications are accepted on a continuous basis, however, NRCS establishes application "cut-off" or submission deadline dates for evaluation, ranking and approval of eligible applications. EQIP is open to all eligible agricultural producers and submitted applications may be considered or evaluated in multiple funding pool opportunities.

     

    Sign-Up Option Description 2015 Application Cutoff Dates
    Regular EQIP EQIP applications may be submitted at any time with your local USDA Service Center. For more information, see “Technical and Financial Assistance” below.

    01/16/15
    03/20/15

    On Farm Energy Initiative Assist producers to conserve energy on their farms through an Agriculture Energy Management Plan (AgEMP), also known as an on-farm energy audit and provide assistance to implement various recommended measures identified in an energy audit.

    01/16/15
    03/20/15

    Fire Initiative Financial assistance is offered through the Wildfire Initiative of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program to help address resource concerns on private and tribal land.

    09/19/14
    11/21/14

    Organic Initiative Special EQIP funding is available to organic growers and those transitioning to organic production.

    01/16/15
    03/20/15

    Sage-Grouse Initiative Focuses on making measurable and significant progress toward treating a specific threat to sage-grouse on private lands through strategic use of conservation programs.

    01/16/15
    03/20/15

    Seasonal High Tunnel Initiative A Program available to agricultural producers, designed to strengthen local and regional food markets and increase the use of sustainable conservation practices that will improve plant and soil quality, reduce nutrient and pesticide transport and reduce energy inputs.

    01/16/15
    03/20/15

    East Face of the Elkhorn Mountains Partnership The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) have entered into a partnership to provide technical assistance and cost sharing opportunities for private forestland owners.

    01/16/15
    03/20/15

     

    Technical and Financial Assistance

    Technical Assistance:  Those who submit an application and are accepted into EQIP may receive technical assistance to plan conservation measures. Through EQIP, NRCS provides or covers the cost of professional technical services to develop conservation measures. This includes:

    • On-site assessments
    • Site-specific practice and management plans/Conservation Activity Plan.
    • Engineering designs

    Participant Responsibilities

    Applicants are responsible for completing and filing all application and eligibility paperwork as required. If funded, participants are required to sign a contract and agree to implement the planned conservation practices to NRCS standards and specifications as scheduled.

    Socially Disadvantaged, Beginning, and Limited Resource Farmers/Ranchers, Military Veteran Farmers

    The 2014 Farm Bill continues to address the unique circumstances and concerns of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, as well as beginning and limited resource farmers and ranchers and Veteran Farmers. It provides for voluntary participation, offers incentives, and focuses on equity in accessing U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs and services. Enhancements include increased payment rates and advance payments of up to 50 percent to purchase materials and services needed to implement conservation practices included in their EQIP contract.

    Oregon is committed to reaching out to Historically Underserved individuals and groups. Historically Underserved participants may also receive higher payment rates in addition to being considered in high priority funding pools. See the Small & Limited and Beginning Farmers and Ranchers page for the NRCS definition of the Historically Underserved.


     2015 EQIP Practice Payment Lists

    EQIP participants may also receive financial assistance to offset the costs associated with installation or adoption of conservation practices.  Eligible conservation practices that are listed in the EQIP Practice Payment Schedule list below:

    • Irrigation systems
    • Irrigation water management
    • Forest stand improvements
    • Fence
    • Livestock watering
    • Waste management systems
    • Vegetative buffers
    • and more

    The following are lists of practices and associated payment rates for each of the EQIP sign-up options.

    The document below requires Microsoft Excel

    2015 EQIP Practice Payment List 2015 EQIP Practice Payment List -- Historically Underserved
    Regular EQIP FY 15 Regular EQIP (XLSX, 62 KB) FY 15 Regular EQIP HU (XLSX, 78 KB)
    EQIP Organic Initiative FY 15 Organic EQIP (XLSX, 64 KB) FY 15 Organic EQIP HU (XLSX, 65 KB)
    EQIP Wildfire Initiative FY 15 Wildfire Initiative (XLSX, 26 KB) FY 15 Wildfire Initiative HU (XLSX, 28 KB)
    EQIP On Farm Energy Initiative FY 15 On Farm Energy Initiative (XLSX, 36 KB) FY 15 On Farm Energy Initiative HU (XLSX, 35 KB)
    EQIP Sage Grouse Initiative FY 15 Sage Grouse Initiative (XLSX, 14 KB) FY 15 Sage Grouse Initiative HU (XLSX, 14 KB)
    EQIP Seasonal High Tunnel Initiative FY 15 Seasonal High Tunnel (XLSX, 18 KB) FY 15 Seasonal High Tunnel  HU (XLSX, 18 KB)
    East Face of the Elkhorn Mountains Partnership FY 15 East Face of the Elkhorn Mountains Partnership (XLSX, 23 KB) FY 15 East Face of the Elkhorn Mountains Partnership HU (XLSX, 28 KB)

     

    EQIP Eligibility

    To participate in any of the EQIP sign-up options, an applicant must be an individual, entity or joint operation that meets EQIP eligibility criteria. For more detailed information, go to:  EQIP Eligibility

     

    EQIP Funding Selection and Priorities

    Priorities for EQIP funding are established locally, based on locally identified natural resource needs consistent with state and national EQIP priorities. Local Work Groups convened by local Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) provide advice to NRCS about natural resource issues and priorities within their counties. EQIP applications are evaluated based on these county priorities and are then prioritized for funding. Applications that best address natural resources as described in the ranking criteria are prioritized for funding.

    For detailed ranking criteria based on location, click on one of the pages below:

    EQIP Ranking Questions
    EQIP Conservation Activity Plan (CAP) -- Coming Soon

     

    For More Information

    NRCS National EQIP Website
    Federal Register, 2008 EQIP Interim Final Rule and Correction  (PDF, 54 KB)

     

    Contact

    Program Contact
    Todd Peplin 1201 NE Lloyd Blvd Portland Oregon 97232 503-414-3292

    Local Contact
    Please contact the District Conservationist in the USDA Service Center nearest the location of your property.

     

    Archived EQIP Information