[ODF_Private_Forests] NRCS Conservation Stewardship applications open
kevin.weeks at state.or.us
Thu Aug 13 10:49:44 PDT 2009
ODF Private Forests News members -
This message of interest to private forest owners is provided by the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service.
Questions about the Private Forests News list? Contact:
Oregon Department of Forestry / Agency Affairs Office
kweeks at odf.state.or.us<mailto:kweeks at odf.state.or.us>
Conservation Stewardship Program
NRCS began continuous sign-up for the new Conservation Stewardship Program on August 10. To be considered for Fiscal Year 2009 funding, applications must be received by September 30, 2009. Applications received after the cutoff will be considered for funding in FY 2010.
The goal of the Stewardship Program is to help farmers, ranchers and non-industrial private forest owners across Oregon maintain existing conservation on their operations while adopting additional activities. The Conservation Stewardship Program encourages land stewards to improve their conservation performance by installing and adopting additional activities, and improving, maintaining, and managing existing activities on agricultural land and non-industrial private forest land. The program is available nationwide on a continuous application basis.
Through the Conservation Stewardship Program, NRCS will provide financial and technical assistance to eligible producers to conserve and enhance soil, water, air, and related natural resources on their land. Eligible lands include cropland, grassland, prairie land, improved pastureland, rangeland, non-industrial private forest lands, agricultural land under the jurisdiction of an Indian tribe, and other private agricultural land (including cropped woodland, marshes, and agricultural land used for the production of livestock) on which resource concerns related to agricultural production could be addressed. Participation in the program is voluntary.
Non-industrial private forest land under consideration for participation in the Conservation Stewardship Program must meet four criteria:
1) The forest or woodland is "green certified" by one of the following certification programs: American Tree Farm System, Green Tag, Smart Wood, Forest Stewardship Council, or Sustainable Forestry Initiative.
2) One or more improvements have been made to the forest/woodland in the past 10 years according to a written forest management or stewardship plan that was prepared with assistance from a certified/licensed natural resource professional. Examples of improvements may include prescribe thinning, tree planting, establishing a firebreak, etc.
3) There is no apparent erosion on harvested or burned areas, roads, skid trails and landings.
4) Native trees are appropriately stocked on the property (except temporarily for areas being reforested) and wildfire risk (in wildfire-prone areas) is minimized by strategically placed narrow firebreaks and wider fuel breaks (which may include roads, streams, riparian areas, and other areas managed to slow fire spread).
The NRCS State Conservationist, in consultation with the State Technical Committee and local work groups, will focus program impacts on natural resources that are of specific concern for a State, or the specific geographic areas within a State. Applications will be evaluated relative to other applications addressing similar priority resource concerns to facilitate a competitive ranking process among applicants within a State who face similar resource challenges.
In order to apply for Fiscal Year 2009 funding, applicants must complete the following steps by September 30, 2009:
1. Complete a Self-Screening Checklist: Before submitting an application, interested producers will first complete a self-screening checklist<http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?et=1102669674572&s=258&e=001J6ROqVbp6ogBUJxR0BFj8HzG8Eyg2-7wg0xSwoAdD-brXbjiGMdnWGkJ_Ke8iT65mWbXHZ3ULPLT5c9h9T6GXZxU2uxGO22RbEpvBBJUu46lN_sT6yizxc3kg3eyVVTlesMPB3YJTXsEyZpoD6G-iSJ_xsayd0rnOn5bLDt3xiFxwkFWcC7woK5d0fzaXe3K_3wvYjy0ivaJdynnxzmq0---Eu33daBz>, available on the NRCS Web site, to determine whether the new program is suitable for them and their operation.
2. Establish Program Eligibility: If producers are interested in the program after completing the checklist, they will then work with their local USDA Service Center to establish their program eligibility and complete the application process.
3. Submit a Program Application: To be considered for FY 2009 funding applicants must submit their CPA-1200 and Appendix by the September 30, 2009 cutoff date.
4. Submit an Operation Map: Applicants must provide an operation map, aerial photograph or overlay that identifies the applicant's agricultural and/or forest operation and delineates eligible land offered for payment under the program with the associated acreage amounts.
A program fact sheet and self screening checklist are linked at the end of the message. For more information, contact: Bill White, Program Manager, (503) 414-3085, Bill.White at or.usda.gov<mailto:Bill.White at or.usda.gov>
Conservation Stewardship Program Fact Sheet
CSP Producer Self Screening Checklist
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