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Press Release

USDA Announces Third Signup for Inflation Reduction Act Funding for Climate-Smart Agriculture in Rhode Island

Apply by May 17, 2024, for this third round of conservation funding
Publish Date
Hay bales in pasture in Matunuck, RI.

NRCS announces additional funding opportunities for FY 2024 for Rhode Island farmers and forest landowners. NRCS is opening a third ranking signup period for Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) climate-smart agriculture and forestry funding under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).

Interested Ocean State farmers, forest landowners, and urban growers should apply by the May 17, 2024, ranking cutoff date. Through conservation programs, NRCS provides technical and financial assistance to help farmers and forest landowners make conservation improvements on their land to benefit natural resources, build resiliency, and help combat the impacts of climate change.

“The Inflation Reduction Act provides a once-in-a-generation investment in conservation on working lands, and we want to work with Rhode Island farmers, forest landowners and urban growers to invest in climate-smart practices that create value and economic opportunity for our clients,” said Phou Vongkhamdy, NRCS State Conservationist in Rhode Island. “We know that agriculture plays a critical role in addressing climate change, and we’re using this funding to bolster our existing programs, maximize climate benefits, and foster other environmental benefits across the landscape.”

EQIP-IRA provides direct climate mitigation benefits and expands access to financial and technical assistance for producers to advance conservation on their farm, ranch or forest land through climate-smart practices like combustion system improvement, cover cropping, conservation tillage, wetland restoration, prescribed grazing, nutrient management, tree planting and more. EQIP-IRA funding also supports other environmental co-benefits, such as water conservation, wildlife habitat improvements, and reducing runoff. Visit the NRCS Climate-Smart Mitigation Activities webpage for a detailed list of practices and videos of each.

Historically underserved farmer benefits

Special provisions are available for historically underserved farmers (beginning, socially disadvantaged or limited resource farmers). Historically underserved farmers can receive higher payment rates of up to 90 percent of average practice cost. NRCS sets aside CSP funds for historically underserved farmers.

How to Apply

NRCS accepts applications for its conservation programs year-round and funding is provided through a competitive process. NRCS sets specific ranking dates to evaluate applications for funding that account for farmer needs, staff workload and ensure potential participants have ample opportunity to apply. Interested Rhode Island applicants should apply by May 17, 2024, to be considered for funding in the current cycle. Applications received afterwards will be automatically deferred to the next funding period.

Call NRCS Rhode Island today to see how we can help you become more climate-smart!

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