NRCS Announces Applications Available for Conservation Stewardship Program
ANNAPOLIS, Md., Dec. 5, 2016 – USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is now accepting applications for enrollment in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), the nation’s largest conservation program. Anne Arundel county farmers and landowners can obtain applications through the Anne Arundel Soil Conservation District office in Annapolis. CSP is for working lands that already have conservation practices in place. Agricultural producers and forest landowners can earn payments for actively managing, maintaining, and expanding conservation activities like cover crops, ecologically-based pest management, buffer strips, and pollinator and beneficial insect habitat – all while maintaining active agriculture production on their land. CSP also encourages the adoption of cutting-edge technologies and new management techniques such as precision agriculture applications, on-site carbon storage and planting for high carbon sequestration rate, and new soil amendments to improve water quality. New updates to the program will enable producers to better evaluate conservation options and the potential benefits to their operations and natural resources. Producers will be also be able to see potential payment scenarios for conservation early in the process. “This year, the Conservation Stewardship Program provides even more opportunities for conservation and greater flexibility at the local level to prioritize resource concerns and conservation approaches,” says Terron Hillsman, Ph.D., State Conservationist. “Customized CSP tools for Maryland will improve the customer experience during application evaluations.” This year’s sign-up runs through February 3, 2017. More information about CSP can be found online at http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/csp . Interested producers can also visit the Anne Arundel Soil Conservation District office located at 2662 Riva Road, Suite 150, Annapolis, MD 21401 or call the office at 410-571-6757.