The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Georgia wants to remind producers the sign-up deadline for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) utilizing funding from the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is March 24.
This statewide sign-up will take two approaches to assist producers who plan to build climate resiliency into their operations. First, those applying for cover crops (Practice Code 340) will be administered through the ACT NOW approach, which is a targeted, rapid, and streamlined application and contract approval process. Through the ACT NOW streamlined application and contract approval approach, cover crop applications will be assessed and ranked as they are submitted to the USDA Field Service Center. Based on funds availability, application assessments with a ranking score of 67 points or greater will be pre-approved immediately for the first batch of funding.
Second, those applying for energy conservation related practices will be administered through the normal batching and ranking process. The energy-specific practices included in this sign-up are:
- Combustion System Improvement (Practice Code 372)
- Energy Efficient Agricultural Operation (Practice Code 374)
- Energy Efficient Lighting System (Practice Code 670)
- Energy Efficient Building Envelope (Practice Code 672)
NRCS does accept applications for conservation programs year-round, but to be included in this funding batch, interested producers should contact their local USDA Service Center to apply by Friday, March 24, 2023. Additional sign-up batches may be announced at a later date, subject to the availability of funding.