Farmers and Ranchers are encouraged to apply for Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) assistance by November 15, 2014 in order to be eligible for 2015 financial and/or technical assistance.
EQUIP is a voluntary conservation program from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). The program promotes agricultural production and environmental quality as compatible goals. EQIP offers financial and technical assistance to assist eligible participants install or implement structural, vegetative, and management conservation practices on eligible agricultural land.
In Kansas, many of the more popular EQUIP practices include brush management and prescribed grazing in pastures and terraces and cover crops on crop ground.
EQIP offers contracts with a minimum term that ends one year after the implementation of the last scheduled practice and a maximum term of 10 years. EQIP activities are carried out according to a conservation plan of operations developed with the program participant(s).
Conservation practices are subject to Kansas NRCS electronic Field Office Technical Guide standards and specifications. Farmers and ranchers may elect to use a certified Technical Service Provider for technical assistance, if available.
Applications can be taken at any time during the year but the cutoff to be considered for 2015 contracts is November 15, 2014. Sign-up is conducted at local USDA Service Centers. Cutoff dates are scheduled to allow for ranking and selection of applications.
EQIP is a competitive program. Since program implementation in 1997 there has been great demand for EQIP financial assistance in Kansas. Producers should not hesitate to sign-up for the program if they have a resource concern the program seeks to address. NRCS is available for assistance to determine if a resource concern exists on the site.