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Conservation Stewardship Program

Staff Contact:
Brooke Jones,
Program Specialist
Phone: (302) 362-7075

Click for National Conservation Stewardship Program Information

Delaware 2021 CSP Information

CSP Classic Application Deadline April 30, 2021

Program Description and Eligibility Requirements

Most of the agriculture producers that are approved to participate in CSP have already been implementing conservation practices on their land. CSP steps in and offers enhancements for those practices. For example, if you have been practicing prescribed grazing, CSP would give you options to enhance that practice with activities such as grazing management to improve plants for wildlife, or grazing management to reduce soil compaction, or grazing management to improve riparian function, just to name a few.

If you decide to enroll in CSP, the local NRCS conservation planner will have a one-on-one consultation with you to evaluate your current management system and the natural resources on your land. Then the NRCS conservation planner will present a variety of CSP enhancement alternatives for you to consider implementing on your land, based on existing conservation practices. The variety of CSP conservation activities that are offered give you a lot of freedom to select enhancements or practices that help you meet your management goals.  These improvements work naturally with your land to bring out your land’s best potential.

Once you choose the enhancements that best fit your operation, CSP offers annual incentive payments for installing these practices on your land. If you want to take it even a step further, CSP also offers bundles where you can select a suite of enhancements to implement and receive an even higher payment rate.



Agricultural producers and owners of non-industrial private forestland and Tribes are eligible to apply for CSP. Eligible land includes cropland, rangeland, pastureland, non-industrial private forestland and other farm or ranch lands.


Participant Responsibilities

Control or own eligible land

Comply with adjusted gross income limitation (AGI) provisions

Be in compliance with the highly erodible land and wetland conservation requirements

Additional restrictions and program requirements may apply.

CSP Application

CSP Application 2021

CSP Payments

Participating in the CSP represents a genuine commitment to conservation – CSP contracts are for five years, with the option to renew if you successfully fulfill the initial contract and agree to achieve additional conservation objectives.

Contract payments are made annually based on the following components:

  • Existing activity payment  - payment to maintain the existing conservation based on the land uses included in the operation and the number of resource concerns that are meeting the stewardship level at the time of application
  • Additional activity payment - payment to implement additional conservation activities
  • Supplemental payment – payment for adopting or improving a resource-conserving crop rotation (optional)

All CSP contracts will have a minimum annual payment of $1,500.

CSP Payment Schedule 2021

Existing Activity Payment

You will be required to maintain the stewardship level of the resource concerns you are already meeting for the 5-year term of the CSP contract.  CSP provides financial assistance for the cost of maintaining the existing conservation systems or practices on your land.

This portion of your annual payment will remain the same for each year of the CSP contract if there are no changes to the total acres enrolled in the program.

Additional Activity Payment

In addition to maintaining the stewardship level for the resource concerns you are already meeting, the CSP contract requires that you meet or exceed at least one additional resource concern category by the end of the conservation stewardship contract on at least one land use. The second portion of the annual CSP payment will be based on the financial assistance payment rate for the individual enhancements, practices, or bundles implemented to help you achieve this objective.


Delaware 2021 Available Ranking Pools - Classic

  • Agricultural Land - Classic
  • Agricultural Land - Beginning Farmer
  • Agricultural Land - Socially Disadvantaged Farmer
  • Agricultural Land - Organic
  • Non-Industrial Private Forest Land - Classic
  • Non-Industrial Private Forest Land - Beginning Farmer
  • Non-Industrial Private Forest Land - Socially Disadvantaged Farmer


Delaware Targeted Resource Concerns

Agricultural Land (AL)

  •  Soil Quality Limitations
  •  Concentrated Erosion
  •  Terrestrial Habitat
  •  Field Sediment, Nutrient and Pathogen Loss
  •  Field Pesticide Loss
  • Pest Pressure
  • Wind & Water Erosion
  • Inefficient Energy

Non-Industrial Private Forest Land (NIPF)

  • Degraded Plant Condition
  • Terrestrial Habitat
  • Pest Pressure
  • Soil Quality Limitations
  • Wind & Water Erosion
  • Concentrated Erosion
  • Field Sediment, Nutrients and Pathogen Loss
  • Aquatic Habitat