Idaho Conservation Stewardship Grant Program (CSP)

USDA: Natural Resources Conservation Service of Idaho


Grant amount: More than US $7,500

Anticipated deadline: Mar 2, 2019

Applicant type: Working Professional Indigenous Group For-Profit Business College / University Nonprofit

Funding uses: Applied Project / Program

Location of project: Idaho

Location of residency: Idaho

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Overview:

Idaho Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) 

No one knows more about your land than you do, and no one knows more about conservation than we do. Together we can develop a plan tailored to your land and your goals to help you increase productivity and protect the value of your land.

Our Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) helps you build on your existing conservation efforts while strengthening your operation. Whether you are looking to improve grazing conditions, increase crop yields, or develop wildlife habitat, we can custom design a CSP plan to help you meet those goals. We can help you schedule timely planting of cover crops, develop a grazing plan that will improve your forage base, implement no-till to reduce erosion or manage forested areas in a way that benefits wildlife habitat. If you are already taking steps to improve the condition of the land, chances are CSP can help you find new ways to meet your goals.

The Conservation Stewardship Program pays participants for conservation performance.

Sustainable Production

CSP is for working lands. It is the largest conservation program in the United States with 70 million acres of productive agricultural and forest land enrolled in CSP. Thousands of people have chosen to enroll in the program because it helps them enhance natural resources and improve their business operation. CSP participants are seeing real results. Some of these benefits include:

  • Increase in cattle gains per acre.
  • Increase in crop yields.
  • Increase in wildlife populations.
  • Decrease in producer inputs.
  • Greater resilience to impacts of weather extremes.

Through CSP, we can help you build your business while implementing conservation practices that help ensure the sustainability of your entire operation. Good land stewardship not only conserves the natural resources on your farm, ranch or forest, it also provides multiple benefits to local communities, including better water and air quality and wildlife habitat, as well as food and fiber.

CSP Management Activities 

Every piece of property is unique with opportunities to improve natural resources and address any areas of concern. Human activities contribute to the condition of natural resources on the land -- they can help improve them or contribute to their decline, which can result in what we refer to as a “resource concern.” We can help you recognize the resources on your land and develop a management plan to improve them. Examples of CSP management activities that can improve resource concerns are:

  • Grazing management to improve wildlife habitat.
  • Extend filter strips to reduce excess sediment, nutrients and chemicals in surface water.
  • Plant cover crops to reduce wind and water erosion.
  • Plant range grasses to improve soil health and wildlife habitat.

CSP Contracts

The program represents a genuine commitment to conservation – CSP contracts are for five years, with the option to renew if you successfully fulfill the initial contract and agree to achieve additional conservation objectives. An NRCS conservation planner will work closely with you throughout the entire process.

Contract payments are based on two components:

  • payments to maintain the existing conservation based on the operation type and number of resource concerns that are meeting the stewardship level at the time of application 
  • payments to implement additional conservation activities

All CSP contracts will have a minimum annual payment of $1500.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.

Eligibility:

  • CSP is available to all producers regardless of operation size or crop produced. Landowners must enroll their entire operation.
  • Eligible lands include cropland, hayland, pastureland, rangeland, nonindustrial private forest lands, and agricultural land under the jurisdiction of an Indian tribe. Participation in the program is voluntary.
  • To participate in CSP, you must be in compliance with highly erodible land and wetland conservation requirements, and have current farm records with USDA Farm Service Agency.
  • You must have effective control of  the land for the term of the proposed contract, be actively engaged in the day-to-day management of the agricultural operation and share in the risks associated with agricultural production.
  • You must also be meeting the stewardship threshold for at least two resource concerns at the time of application.