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USDA and World Wildlife Fund partner to deliver up to $1 million in Regional Conservation Partnership Program funding on Grazing Lands and Support for Farmers and Ranchers in South Dakota and Nebraska

Publish Date
Cows for World Wildlife Fund NR

The Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) is making one million dollars in financial assistance for livestock producers on grazing lands. 

HURON, S.D., May 1, 2023 – The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF) through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) are making one million dollars in financial assistance for livestock producers on grazing lands.  Applications will be accepted starting May 1, 2023, through June 1, 2023, and funds are available to producers in western South Dakota and 10 counties in northwestern Nebraska.   
The RCPP promotes coordination between NRCS and its partners to deliver conservation assistance to producers and landowners. The NRCS aids producers through partnership agreements and through program contracts or easement agreements. Assistance is delivered in accordance with the rules of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).

“World Wildlife Fund’s Sustainable Ranching Initiative is excited to partner with NRCS to promote livestock grazing practices that benefit grassland ecological functions, grassland bird populations and ranch viability and resiliency,” stated Alexis Bonogofsky, WWF Sustainable Ranching Initiative Program Manager. “Through the Building Ranch Resiliency in South Dakota and Nebraska RCPP, we look forward to making a landscape-level impact and working to understand how grazing practices impact ecological function, soil health, and grassland bird populations in the Northern Great Plains (NGP).”

The goal of this program is to increase resiliency on South Dakota and Nebraska ranches

SD RCPP Funding Area

through complete ranch systems planning and implementation of practices that will improve grassland and natural resources, and enhance economic viability.  While not required, additional financial assistance is available to producers that enroll in WWF’s Ranch Systems and Viability Planning (RSVP) program. The RSVP provides training, cost-share, monitoring, and access to peer-to-peer networking for producers willing to not convert grasslands for 10 years, follow an agreed upon grazing management plan, and on ranch monitoring.

The following practices are eligible under this project:
Brush Management (314)
Herbaceous Weed Treatment (315)
Conservation Cover (327)
Prescribed Burning (338)
Fence (382)
Pasture and Hay Planting (512)
Livestock Pipeline (516)
Prescribed Grazing (528)
Pumping Plant (533)
Range Planting (550)
Heavy Use Area Protection (561)
Livestock Shelter Structure (576)
Watering Facility (614)
Water Well (642)
Upland Wildlife Habitat Management (645)
Structures for Wildlife (649)

Additional partners include South Dakota Department of Game, Fish, and Parks, Rainwater Basin Joint Venture, Department of Interior - Bureau of Land Management, Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, Millborn Seeds, Northern Great Plains Joint Venture, and South Dakota State University.

How to Apply:  Eligible agricultural and forest producers are encouraged to reach out to their local USDA service center:  Service Center Locator | Natural Resources Conservation Service ( For more information on RCPP, visit South Dakota’s RCPP webpage:….



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