Accessing the New Conservation Stewardship Program
NCAT program specialist
with help from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition
Published December 4, 2013: updated January 8, 2014
The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) passed in the 2008 Farm Bill was made available to farmers in the fall of 2009. This program rewards farmers and ranchers for current conservation practices and for putting in place additional new conservation practices and enhancements over a 5 year contract period. Depending on your desire to maintain and make new conservation efforts, this program can provide up to $200,000 in support over five years. The program allows all farmers and ranchers to apply at any time, but to receive funding in the current 2014 federal fiscal year application should be STARTED by February 7, 2014. Thus, if you wish to take advantage of this program and have not yet applied then you should begin the application as soon as possible.
If you are interested in exploring this program to expand conservation efforts that often can lead to improved farm sustainability and profitability in 2014, it is critical at least start the application by February 7, 2014. You can always halt the process of application at any time, but starting the process before February 7, 2014 at least keeps open your options.
An excellent step by step guide to applying for the CSP in 2014 developed by the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition can be found at above link.
In addition call the ATTRA toll free hot-line number at 1-800-346-9140 (English) and 1-800-411-3222 (Spanish) if you need any additional help or further information about accessing this program.
As of this release date, all details on the national NRCS website for the 2014 sign-up are not available yet, but reviewing information available can be helpful. See this link:
The 2013 allocation of funds to farmers and ranchers under this program are almost completed. Nearly 7,000 farmers and ranchers have enrolled over 9.5 million acres in advanced conservation through the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) in 2013. This represents over $124 million in payments, or roughly $620 million over the life of the five-year CSP contracts.
This page was last updated on: January 8, 2014