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News Release

Financial assistance available to Oregon farmers, ranchers and forest landowners

Release No.: 2021-10-004

Contact: Catherine Magee, Programs Lead
Catherine.Magee@usda.gov

Lauren Bennett, Public Affairs Officer
Lauren.Bennett2@usda.gov

Financial assistance available to Oregon farmers, ranchers and forest landowners
Next application deadline November 19

PORTLAND, Ore., October 19, 2021 — Opportunities are available for Oregon farmers, ranchers and forest owners to perform voluntary conservation activities on their privately-owned land with financial assistance from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

NRCS Oregon announces a new sign-up deadline for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). Applicants must apply by November 19, 2021 to be considered for the first round of fiscal year 2022 funding.

To apply for EQIP, contact your local USDA Service Center or apply online at farmers.gov.

The November 19 sign-up deadline applies to the following EQIP funding pools:

  • General EQIP: In Oregon, general EQIP dollars are only available to producers within a Conservation Implementation Strategy (CIS) area. CIS’s are locally-led projects developed by farmers and partners through the NRCS Local Work Group process. See a map of current CIS’s on the NRCS Oregon homepage and a list of current CIS’s here.
     
  • Organic EQIP: Offers assistance to USDA certified organic producers and to producers wishing to transition their operation to obtain an organic certification. Visit the Organic EQIP page here.
     
  • Seasonal High Tunnel EQIP: Offers assistance to install a seasonal high tunnel (hoop house) to extend seasonal crop production to strengthen local and regional food markets while reducing pesticide use and energy inputs. Visit the Seasonal High Tunnel EQIP page here.
     
  • On-Farm Energy EQIP: Assists producers to conserve energy on their farms through an on-farm energy audit and provides assistance to implement various recommended measures identified in an energy audit. Visit the On-Farm Energy EQIP page here.
     
  • Sage Grouse Initiative EQIP: Focuses on making measurable and significant progress toward treating threats to rangeland health including sage grouse habitat on private lands. Visit the Sage Grouse Initiative EQIP page here.
     
  • Animal Feeding Operation Initiative: Available to AFO producers statewide to address water quality and air quality resource concerns by developing a Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan to manage manure and organic byproducts; and to implement conservation practices identified in that plan. Visit the Animal Feeding Operation Initiative page here.
     
  • Joint Chiefs Landscape Restoration Initiative: These projects focus on reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire on private forestlands and adjacent federal lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service. Visit the Joint Chiefs page here.
     
  • Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) EQIP projects: There are currently 17 active RCPP projects throughout Oregon.  These are typically 5-year projects with specific goals within regions and watersheds. Visit the Oregon RCPP webpage to learn more about RCPP funding opportunities and program eligibility. To apply for RCPP and see what is available in your area, call your local USDA Service Center or lead partner for the RCPP Project.
     
  • National Water Quality Initiative: NRCS works closely with conservation partners to select priority watersheds where on-farm conservation investments will deliver the greatest water quality improvements. Fiscal year 2022 funding is available for the Lost River watershed in Klamath County. Visit the National Water Quality Initiative page here.
     
  • National Air Quality Initiative: In Oregon, NAQI funding is available to farmers in Hood River County to help orchard producers reduce the use of high-emission, diesel-fuel smudge pots which are commonly used to protect crops from damaging spring frosts. NRCS is providing a financial incentive to help growers remove smudge pots from their operations, so they can be replaced with cleaner, more efficient systems. Visit the National Air Quality Initiative page here.

To learn more about EQIP funding opportunities in Oregon and for more information about program eligibility, visit the Oregon EQIP webpage.

To search EQIP funding opportunities specific to each county, visit the NRCS Oregon website at www.or.nrcs.usda.gov and click the “What’s Available in My County?” icon.

Interested applicants can also contact their local USDA Service Center to inquire about EQIP opportunities in their county and to apply for assistance.

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