Skip Navigation

On-farm Energy Initiative

Voluntary Conservation Works


The Agricultural Act of 2014 provides authority to use the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) to address energy conservation on agricultural operations. The EQIP Energy Initiative is designed to assist producers in two ways:

  1. Identify ways to conserve energy on farms through an Agricultural Energy Management Plan (AgEMP), also known as an on-farm energy audit.
  2. Provide assistance to implement various recommended measures through the use of eligible conservation practices, such as the Farmstead Energy Improvement practice.

A professional energy auditor gathering information from a farmer

All AgEMPs must be developed by a Technical Service Provider (TSP). A directory of TSPs can be found at the TechReg web page. Development of the Conservation Activity Plan must be complete within 12 months of the contract obligation.

Note: Applying for the Farmstead Energy Improvement conservation practice requires an energy audit before an applicant can apply for that practice. This is the only conservation practice where the energy audit is a prerequisite.

The plan will be individually tailored to ensure coverage of the primary energy use areas on the farm headquarters, such as milk cooling, irrigation pumping, heating and cooling of livestock production facilities, and other common on-farm activities.

The AgEMP plan will determine and document current energy usage, over the past annual cycle, and provides cost-effective alternatives and recommendations for energy conservation.

The evaluation of energy conservation activities shall include energy used in the cultivation, protection, and harvesting of agricultural crops.

How to Apply for USDA-NRCS Conservation Programs

Learn what steps you will need to take to prepare for, and submit, your application to become a USDA-NRCS Conservation Program participant.

Learn more information on the criteria required to become an eligible EQIP applicant.

More Information

Five Steps to AssistanceTo learn how to get started with NRCS.

Service Center Locator

Find your local USDA Service Center.

USDA-NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program

GovDelivery envelope imageSign up for Farm Bill email updates