USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is providing up to $30 million in technical and financial assistance to help eligible conservation partners voluntarily protect, restore and enhance critical wetlands on agricultural lands.
Restored wetlands help improve water quality downstream, enhance wildlife habitat, reduce impacts from flooding, and provide recreational benefits.
“We are looking to our partners for wetland project proposals that will leverage our conservation funding,” said Kasey Taylor, Delaware state conservationist. “Together, we can maximize our wetland restoration acres in Delaware and gain greater results.”
Funding is available through the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership, part of the conservation service’s agricultural conservation easement program. Eligible conservation partners in Delaware will work through the partnership to voluntarily execute high-priority wetland protection, restoration and enhancement activities on eligible agricultural lands. The program enables effective integration of wetland restoration on working agricultural landscapes, providing meaningful benefits to farmers and ranchers who enroll in the program and to the communities where the wetlands exist.
Through the partnership, states, local government units, nongovernmental organizations and American Indian tribes collaborate with with the conservation service through cooperative and partnership agreements. These partners work with tribal and private landowners who voluntarily enroll eligible land into easements to protect, restore and enhance wetlands on their properties.
The conservation service will review partners’ project proposals and evaluate priority resource concerns, objectives, costs and expected outcomes for each project, and rank proposals based on the criteria set forth in the ranking worksheet on the partnership webpage.
When developing proposals, organizations interested in partnering are encouraged to work with John Bushey, easement program specialist.
Proposals should be emailed to John.Bushey@usda.gov by Monday, Nov. 30.