Skip Navigation

News Release

ACEP Sign Up 2014 May 30 and June 6

 ACEP Graphic Art

FOR Immediate Release                           Media Contact: Stuart Lee,


NRCS starts signup for ag-land, wetland conservation easements


                             Applications for new Farm Bill program due May 30th, 2014 and June 6th, 2014

RALEIGH, May 7, 2014– USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is now accepting applications for its new Agricultural Conservation Easements Program (ACEP).

ACEP, created through the 2014 Farm Bill, funds easements for agricultural lands and wetland reserves. ACEP combines former NRCS easement programs into one program with two components - Agricultural Land Easements (ALE) and Wetland Reserve Easements (WRE).

“We are pleased to offer the new ACEP to landowners who wish to permanently protect agricultural land and wetlands” said North Carolina State Conservationist Tim Beard “We encourage Indian tribes, state and local governments, non-governmental organizations and private landowners to contact their local NRCS office to find out how to apply.”

Approved agricultural easements would prevent productive working lands from being converted to non-agricultural uses and maximize protection of land devoted to food production. Cropland, rangeland, grassland, pastureland and nonindustrial private forestland are eligible. 

Wetland reserve easements would restore and enhance wetlands and improve habitat. Eligible lands include farmed or converted wetlands that can be successfully and cost-effectively restored.

Applications are currently being accepted for the ACEP-WRE component and will be rated according to the easement’s potential for protecting and enhancing habitat for migratory birds, fish and other wildlife.  ACEP-WRE applications must be submitted to North Carolina NRCS by June 6th 2014. 

Applications are currently being accepted for the ACEP-ALE component.  Parcels submitted by an eligible entity will be ranked according to the relative development pressure and agricultural viability of the offered land.  ACEP-ALE applications must be submitted to North Carolina NRCS by May 30th, 2014. 

Applications are available at local USDA Service Center and at Agreements will be evaluated starting in late August.

Learn more about ACEP and other Farm Bill programs at from our Farm Bill program Page.

To get started with NRCS, visit your local USDA Service Centeror Learn more about the Farm Bill at


NRCS ACEP Website 
ACEP Sign-Up Press Release



USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).