2014 Farm Bill Programs
Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP)
Purpose of Program
- EQIP's purpose is to promote cost effective agricultural production while improving wildlife habitat, forest, soil, water and energy management and reducing regulatory burdens on producers.
- EQIP includes planning for organic production, forest, wildlife, wetland, grazing, nutrient, air quality, invasive species, residue, animal carcass, pest, pollinator and fuels management and energy and water conservation.
- Sixty percent of EQIP funding is targeted at livestock production and at least 5% of the funding is dedicated to benefitting wildlife habitat. Priority is given to fish and wildlife species identified in state, regional, or national wildlife plans and initiatives.
- Eligible land includes confined livestock feeding operations, crop, range, grass and pastureland, nonindustrial forestland and other agricultural lands on which resource concerns could be addressed.
- States/local governments are not eligible to participate in EQIP.
- Private individuals operating on government lands maybe eligible.
Contract Period and Cost-Share
- Provides an overall payment limitation total of $450,000 per individual or legal entity, regardless of the number of farms or contracts, between the years of 2014-2018.
- Organic production and transition payments are limited to $20,000/year or $80,000 over 6 years per person or legal entity.
- Practice payments include planning and lost income recovery costs. Beginning, limited resource or socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers can also receive up to 50% in advance payments.
- EQIP is run by NRCS.
- Applications can be filed year round at local NRCS/FSA/USDA Service Centers and Conservation District Offices. See link to NRCS offices below.
Common EQIP Practices
- Conservation tillage
- Range planting
- Nutrient management
- Irrigation system conversions
- Brush Control
- Fencing and livestock watering facilities
- Prescribed grazing and burning
- Upland Wildlife Habitat Management
For more information contact:
Chuck Kowaleski, Farm Bill Coordinator
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department
Phone: (254) 718-7684
- Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) - Contact information from the US Dept. of Agriculture Service Center Locator for Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the Rural Development agencies.