USDA to invest up to $360M in partner-driven conservation

U.S. Department of Agriculture
Farm Forum

WASHINGTON, D.C. -

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service invited potential conservation partners on Aug. 6 to submit project applications for federal funding through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program. NRCS will award up to $360 million to locally driven, public-private partnerships that improve the nation’s water quality, combat drought, enhance soil health, support wildlife habitat and protect agricultural viability.

“RCPP brings an expanded approach to investing in natural resource conservation that empowers local communities to work with multiple partners and agricultural producers to design

solutions that work best for them,” said NRCS Chief Matthew Lohr.

Partners may request between $250,000 and $10 million in RCPP funding through this funding announcement. Partners are expected to offer value-added contributions to amplify the impact of RCPP funding in an amount equal or greater to the NRCS investment.

Eligible lead partners are encouraged to apply. Funding is open to private industry, non-government organizations, Indian tribes, state and local governments, water districts and universities, among others. The full list of eligible entities is available in the RCPP funding announcement.

First authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill, RCPP has combined nearly $1 billion in NRCS investments with close to $2 billion in non-NRCS dollars to implement conservation practices across the nation. There are 336 active RCPP projects that have engaged more than 2,000 partners. Successful RCPP projects provide innovative conservation solutions, leverage partner contributions and offer impactful and measurable outcomes.

The USDA is now accepting proposals for RCPP through the RCPP portal at https://nrcs-sites.secure.force.com/. Proposals are due by 10:59 p.m. Central Time on Nov. 4. For more information, view the application for program funding at https://bit.ly/2PzidVo.

A webinar with general program information for RCPP applicants will be 2 p.m. Central Time on Aug. 27. Visit the RCPP website at https://bit.ly/3a44hfo for information on how to participate.