DOVER — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is investing up to $17 million for conservation partners to help protect and restore critical wetlands on agricultural lands through the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership.
USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is prioritizing proposals that focus on assisting historically underserved producers conserving wetlands. Proposals from partners are due Aug. 15.
Restored wetlands help to improve water quality downstream, enhance wildlife habitat, reduce impacts from flooding and provide recreational benefits.
“Our goal is to help all agricultural producers in their efforts to conserve natural resources on their land,” said Kasey L. Taylor, state conservationist in Delaware. “Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnerships will support partners in their efforts to engage with producers to restore wetlands on working lands.”
Through WREP projects, eligible conservation partners protect, restore and enhance high-priority wetlands on agriculture lands.
WREP 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.
Eligible partners include tribes, state and local governments and non-government organizations. WREP partners are required to contribute a financial or technical assistance fund match.
WREP funding is for fiscal year 2022 which begins on Oct. 1.
Partners interested in applying should contact John Bushey, Easement Program specialist at 302-598-4746, when developing the proposal. Proposals are due by Aug. 15.
Partners looking to learn more about opportunities for WREP funding for fiscal year 2022 are encouraged to attend the WREP workshop on July 15 at 1 p.m. Partners interested in attending should contact WREP program manager, Lisa McCauley at email@example.com.