NRCS provides leadership in a partnership effort to help people conserve, maintain, and improve our natural resources and environment.
Legacy of Conservation:
In the Dust Bowl days of the 1930’s, the Soil Conservation Service – now called the Natural Resources Conservation Service, has helped millions of private land owners protect their soil, water, and related resources. Hugh Hammond Bennett is known as the father of soil conservation. Bennett headed that agency as its first Chief. He hired specialists in agronomy, forestry, soil science, biology, engineering, and social sciences The agency championed the creation of the conservation district to help assist farmers The first conservation district was in Bennett’s native North Carolina on August 4, 1937
Through this emerging conservation delivery system, locally elected citizens established priorities and plans for the districts works. Today, virtually every county is served by NRCS and local conservation districts.
NRCS Program Assistance:
NRCS has numerous conservation programs for Oklahoma Landowners and Operators.
NRCS Programs include”
- Agriculture Conservation Easement Program – Wetland Reserve Easements (WRE) and Agriculture Land Easements (ALE)
The Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) provides financial and technical assistance to help conserve agricultural lands and wetlands and their related benefits. Under the Agricultural Land Easements component, NRCS helps Indian tribes, state and local governments and non-governmental organizations protect working agricultural lands and limit non-agricultural uses of the land. Under the Wetlands Reserve Easements component, NRCS helps to restore, protect and enhance enrolled wetlands.
Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) are competitive grants that drive public and private sector innovation in resource conservation. Authorized by the 2002 Farm Bill, CIG uses Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds to award competitive grants to non-Federal governmental or nongovernmental organizations, American Indian Tribes, or individuals.
Our Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) helps you build on your existing conservation efforts while strengthening your operation. Whether you are looking to improve grazing conditions, increases crop yields, or develop wildlife habitat, we can custom design a CSP plan to help you meet those goals. We can help you schedule timely planting of cover crops, develop a grazing plan that will improve your forage base, implement no-till to reduce erosion or manage forested areas in a way that benefits wildlife habitat. If you are already taking steps to improve the condition of the land, chances are CSP can help you find new ways to meet your goals. While applications for CSP are accepted year round, applications must be received by May 29, 2020 to be considered for the 2020 funding period.
The EWP Program provides assistance to project sponsors and individuals in implementing emergency recovery measures to relieve imminent hazards to life and property created by a natural disaster that causes a sudden impairment of a watershed.
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) is a voluntary conservation program from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) that promotes agricultural production, forest management, and environmental quality as compatible goals. Through EQIP, farmers and ranchers may receive financial and technical assistance to install or implement structural and management conservation practices on eligible agricultural land. EQIP was reauthorized in the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2014 (Farm Bill). The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) administers EQIP. Funding for EQIP comes from the Commodity Credit Corporation.
The HFRP helps landowners restore, enhance and protect forestland resources on private lands through easements and financial assistance. Through HRFP, landowners promote the recovery of endangered or threatened species, improve plant and animal biodiversity and enhance carbon sequestration.
The Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) promotes coordination between NRCS and its partners to deliver conservation assistance to producers and landowners. NRCS provides assistance to producers through partnership agreements and through program contracts or easement agreements.
Oklahoma Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has 2,107 flood control dams in 61 counties. These dams were constructed beginning in 1949 by local sponsors with financial and technical assistance from the USDA – NRCS authorized through Public Law 78-534 (Washita River Watershed) and Public Law 83-566 Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Program.