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On-Farm Energy Initiative

The 2014 Farm Bill 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.

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 and contract lengths are typically limited to two years.

Core Practices

122 Agricultural Energy Management Plan - Headquarters
124 Agricultural Energy Management Plan - Landscape
374 Farmstead Energy Improvement
449 Irrigation Water Management
533 Pumping Plant

Supporting Practices

328 Conservation Crop Rotation
340 Cover Crop
436 Irrigation Reservoir
345 Residue and Tillage Management, Mulch Till
329 Residue and Tillage Management, No Till/Strip Till/Direct Seed
380 Windbreak/Shelterbelt Establishment

Visit the National On-Farm Energy Initiative website for more information.


NRCS Field Offices, located in the USDA Service Centers in each Maryland county, can provide additional details and program assistance concerning On-Farm Energy Initiative eligibility requirements, practices, and payments.

Program Contacts

Mikel Williams Hawkins
Farm Bill Specialist
Phone: 443.482.2923

Jackie Byam
Assistant State Conservationist- Programs
Phone: 443.482.2927