Funds available for conservation efforts

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COLUMBUS, — More than $1.3 million is available to agricultural producers and landowners to improve and protect water quality in the Great Lakes Basin.

Terry J. Cosby, Ohio State Conservationist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), announced a Fiscal Year 2017 sign-up period for agricultural producers to install specific conservation practices through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI).

Eligible counties

Agricultural producers located in select watersheds within the Great Lakes Basin, which includes portions of Allen, Auglaize, Crawford, Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Huron, Lucas, Marion, Mercer, Ottawa, Paulding, Putnam, Richland, Sandusky, Seneca, Shelby, Van Wert, Williams, Wood, and Wyandot Counties have until Feb. 17, to submit an application.

The GLRI is a multi-agency partnership working to improve and protect the waters of the Great Lakes Basin by providing agricultural producers in the Maumee River Watershed with funds to improve natural resources and water quality, said Crosby.

This year, GLRI focuses on practices that have the highest benefit for reducing water quality degradation due to agricultural runoff such as: waste storage facilities, nutrient management, residue management, no-till, tree planting, drainage water management, and more.

To apply

Producers located in the selected Great Lakes Basin watersheds can apply at their local USDA Service Center for funding through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the Conservation Technical Assistance Program (CTAP).

To learn more about NRCS’ programs visit www.oh.nrcs.usda.gov.

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