Signup Continues in Alabama for Climate-Smart Agriculture Funding

Sabrina Halvorson USDA-NRCS

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is making funding available for agricultural producers and forest landowners nationwide to participate in voluntary conservation programs and adopt climate-smart practices. The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) provided dollars for climate smart agriculture through several conservation programs.

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Alabama is making funding available for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).

Within IRA-EQIP, supporting practices may be requested, but will only be included in a conservation plan if they facilitate a Climate Smart Agricultural and Forestry (CSAF) practice. Within CSP, only those enhancements listed as a CSAF enhancement may be included in an IRA-CSP conservation plan.

Applications are accepted on a continuous basis; but selecting applications for funding is completed periodically through batching periods with specific cutoff dates. The first cutoff date in Alabama is April 28th, 2023. Applications received after this date will be held and considered for subsequent funding opportunities as available funds permit.

Within EQIP, special emphasis participants like socially disadvantaged, limited resource, new and beginning, and eligible military veteran farmers and ranchers are eligible for a higher payment. In addition, these historically underserved farmers and ranchers are eligible for a 50 percent advanced payment for purchasing materials or contracting to help with practice implementation in EQIP.

For more information about Alabama NRCS programs, visit your local USDA Service Center.