RCPP Applications Accepted Through April 13

Jim Rogers Agri-Business, USDA-NRCS

Up to $225 million is being made available by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). Funding opportunities for conservation partners are available through both RCPP Classic and RCPP Alternative Funding Arrangements (AFA). The program’s mission is to facilitate projects to address natural resource challenges on agricultural land. USDA will be RCPP applications for both components of the program through April 13. Since being established through the 2014 Farm Bill, RCPP has resulted in nearly $3 billion being collectively invested in conservation activities on private lands.

RCPP Applications

“RCPP is public-private partnership at its best,” Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) California State Conservationist Carlos Suarez said in a press release. “We’re harnessing the power of partnership to create lasting solutions to global challenges, like climate change, and support producers and communities who have been underserved in the past.”    

A total of 579 projects have been awarded funding through RCPP to support conservation activities of more than 3,000 partner organizations. Funding for this year will include opportunities to address issues of climate change, benefit historically underserved producers, and support urban agriculture. Projects that receive support through RCPP Classic are implemented through NRCS contracts and easements. Program activities are carried out in collaboration with producers, landowners and communities, along with other project partners.

RCPP AFA provides greater flexibility in developing new conservation approaches that may not be available through RCPP Classic. Project types include those that take original conservation approaches that also leverage federal investment. Projects that support a pay-for-performance conservation approach and seek large-scale infrastructure investment are also covered through RCPP AFA.

Funding is available to groups which include agricultural organizations, state and local government, conservation districts, non-government organizations, and others. A webinar is scheduled for January 20 to provide general information about the program and answer questions about RCPP applications.