Filter strip, photo courtesy USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Conservation Stewardship Program signup deadline announced

The next deadline for Ohio Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) applications to be considered for funding this fiscal year is May 29, 2020. Through CSP, USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) helps Ohio farmers and forest landowners earn payments for expanding conservation activities while maintaining agricultural production on their land. CSP also encourages adoption of new technologies and management techniques.

“CSP is a legacy program for the next generation. It continues to assist private landowners in enhancing their natural resources and achieving their conservation and production goals,” said Jon Bourdon, NRCS acting state conservationist in Ohio. “It is the largest conservation program in the United States with more than 70 million acres of productive agricultural and forest land enrolled nationally.”

While applications are accepted throughout the year, interested producers should submit applications to their local NRCS office by May 29, 2020, to ensure their applications are considered for 2020 funding.

CSP provides many benefits including increased crop yields, decreased inputs, wildlife habitat improvements and increased resilience to weather extremes. CSP is for working lands including cropland, pastureland, and nonindustrial private forest land.

For additional information about CSP, contact the local USDA Service Center. USDA Service Centers are open for business by phone appointment only and field work will continue with appropriate social distancing. While program delivery staff will continue to come into the office, they will be working with producers by phone, and using online tools whenever possible. All USDA Service Center visitors wishing to conduct business with NRCS, the Farm Service Agency, or any other USDA Service Center agency are required to call their Service Center to schedule a phone appointment.

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