Friday, December 24, 2004

State Partners with USDA for Republican River Water Savings

Converting Crop land to dry land may save the water usage. But is anyone looking into the issue of the dust & other pollutions that associate with the dry land applications?? I recommend that there always need to find a balnce , pollutions & contaminations are always co-exist.

State Partners with USDA for Republican River Water Savings

LINCOLN ---Irrigation farmers in 14 southwest Nebraska counties along the Republican River are being offered a one-time $100 per acre bonus payment to convert irrigated cropland to some other land use, according to state and federal officials here.

Steve Chick, NRCS State Conservationist, and Roger Patterson, Director of the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources, are announcing one million dollars of state funds will be an added incentive to NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program funds to reduce irrigated cropland acres and water use.

Patterson said, �These funds are part of the action needed to reduce Nebraska�s water usage to comply with the Republican River Compact. We will add the incentive payment on up to 10,000 eligible acres.� Irrigated land within approximately two and one-half miles of the Republican River or its tributaries will be eligible.

Chick said, �These state funds will be committed with approved Environmental Quality Incentives Program applications now being accepted in local NRCS offices. An EQIP contract can pay between $50 and $100 per year for three years for irrigated land conversions.

In the EQIP program, converting from irrigated land to another land use has different amounts of payment. Converting irrigated land to dry land cropland has a $50 per acre payment; conversion to non-irrigated pasture and hay land has a $60 per acre payment; conversion to non-irrigated rangeland has $90 per acre payment; and conversion to non-irrigated wildlife habitat has a $100 per acre payment. The EQIP incentive payments are offered up to three years of a four year contract. The state payment is a one-time incentive payment of $100 per acre, no matter which option is selected.

The state incentive is offered only to producers who receive an approved EQIP contract on the qualifying acres. Eligible land must have been irrigated two of the previous five years. The maximum total area cannot exceed 160 acres. An entire field will generally rank higher in application scoring than partial fields. Irrigated land adjacent to a sprinkler system is not eligible unless the land under a sprinkler is also enrolled.

Contracts that convert land to dry land cropland can not be irrigated for the life of the contract. Contracts that convert land to grass cover must be maintained without irrigation for 10 years. Read More....
State Partners with USDA for Republican River Water Savings

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