Applications for new Farm Bill program due June 6, 2014
NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE STARTS SIGNUP FOR AG LAND, WETLAND CONSERVATION EASEMENT PROGRAM
USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is now accepting applications for its new Agricultural Conservation Easements Program (ACEP).
“The state of Vermont is a national leader for conservation of agricultural lands,” said Vermont State Conservationist, Vicky M. Drew. “We look forward to collaborating with our dedicated partners and continuing our work through the new program.”
Approved agricultural easements will prevent productive working lands from being converted to non-agricultural uses and maximize protection of land devoted to food production. Cropland, grassland, pastureland and nonindustrial private forestland are eligible.
Wetland reserve easements will restore and enhance wetlands and improve habitat. Eligible lands include farmed or converted wetlands that can be successfully and cost-effectively restored.
Applications are currently being accepted for wetlands reserve easements and will be rated according to the easement’s potential for protecting and enhancing habitat for migratory birds, fish and other wildlife.
Applications must be submitted to Vermont NRCS by June 6, 2014. Applications are available at local USDA Service Center and at www.nrcs.usda.gov/GetStarted.
The ACEP combines NRCS’ former Farm and Ranch Lands Protection, Grassland Reserve and Wetlands Reserve programs.
Learn more about ACEP and other Farm Bill programs at www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/vt/programs/farmbill/.