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News Release

USDA Offers Renewal Options for Expiring Conservation Stewardship Program Contracts

Contact:
Gina Kerzman, Public Affairs Officer
5093232911


USDA’s Largest Conservation Program Helps Producers Improve Health, Productivity of Working Lands

WASHINGTON, April 4, 2017 – State Conservationist Roylene Rides at the Door of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) today announced that a contract renewal sign-up is underway for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) for Washington State.

CSP is the USDA’s largest working lands conservation program with more than 80 million acres enrolled nationwide.  NRCS made several updates to the popular program last fall.  These changes help producers better evaluate conservation options that benefit their operations while improving the health and productivity of private and Tribal working lands.

“The changes are providing more opportunities for producers in Washington to participate and bring their conservation efforts to the next level,” said Rides at the Door. 

Participants with existing CSP contracts that will expire on Dec. 31, 2017 can access the benefits of the recent program changes through an option to renew their contracts for an additional five years, if they agree to adopt additional activities to achieve higher levels of conservation on their lands. 

NRCS will be accepting applications for renewal of expiring CSP contracts now through May 5, 2017.

Any applicant using an Employer Identification Number (EIN) taxpayer number to receive payments must have a Dun & Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) and an active and current registration in the federal System for Award Management (SAM) at www.sam.gov prior to applying for participation in NRCS programs, and to remain eligible for payments under a funded contract. A fact sheet about DUNS and SAM is available on the Washington NRCS website at www.wa.nrcs.usda.gov on the “programs” tab.

Through CSP, agricultural producers and forest landowners earn payments for actively managing, maintaining, and expanding conservation activities like cover crops, buffer strips, pollinator and beneficial insect habitat, and soil health building activities – all while maintaining active agricultural production on their land. Benefits to producers can include:

  • Improved cattle gains per acre;
  • Increased crop yields;
  • Decreased inputs;
  • Wildlife population improvements; and
  • Better resilience to weather extremes.

“CSP is for working lands,” said Rides at the Door. “Washington producers who have voluntarily enrolled in the program have made the choice to enhance natural resources and improve their business operation.”

Washington producers interested in contract renewals or applying for CSP for the first time should visit www.wa.nrcs.usda.gov or contact their local USDA service center to learn more.

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