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News Release

USDA NRCS Announces Conservation Stewardship Program Deadline

Contact:  Andrew Thomason, Public Affairs Specialist | Phone:  (605) 570-2625

CSP land in Lyman County marks the seven millionth acre in the program for South Dakota.



CSP land in Lyman County marks the seven millionth acre in the program for South Dakota.


NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE (NRCS), Huron, S.D., February 22, 2021 – The next deadline for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) applications to be considered for funding in Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 is March 26, 2021. The 2018 Farm Bill made several changes to this critical conservation program which helps agricultural producers take the conservation activities on their farm or ranch to the next level.

While applications are accepted throughout the year, interested producers should contact their local NRCS Field Office to discuss how to submit applications by March 26, 2021, to ensure their applications are considered for 2021 funding.

Changes to the Program

The 2018 Farm Bill authorizes NRCS to accept new CSP enrollments from 2019 until 2023, and it makes some important improvements to the program. These updates include:

The NRCS now enrolls eligible, high ranking applications based on dollars rather than acres and covers part of the cost for producers implementing new conservation activities and maintaining their existing activities. Higher payment rates are now available for certain conservation activities including cover crops and resource conserving crop rotations. The CSP now provides specific support for organic farmers and for those transitioning to organic production activities, along with special grassland conservation initiative for certain producers who have maintained cropland base acres. A participant may now enroll public land on which they are the operator.

About the Program

The CSP is offered in South Dakota through continuous sign-ups. The program provides many benefits including increased crop yields, decreased inputs, wildlife habitat improvements, and increased resilience to weather extremes. The CSP is for working lands including cropland, pastureland, rangeland, non-industrial private forestland, and agricultural land under the jurisdiction of a Tribe.

More Information

Specialists with the USDA NRCS are respecting social distancing and are available by phone or e-mail. Please visit to find a directory with your local office and employee contact information.