Cost-share assistance offered by USDA-NRCS in the Big Creek Watershed priority area
Posted: Tuesday, April 2, 2013 8:00 pm
NASHVILLE — Farmers and landowners in West Tennessee have until April 19 to submit applications for cost-share assistance through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program’s (EQIP) Big Creek Watershed priority area. Producers can submit applications for EQIP funding at any time. Applicants should visit their local U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) field service center to apply.
A total of $125,000 in cost-share assistance is available through NRCS and the Chickasaw Basin Authority is providing $100,000 to address agricultural resource concerns from non-irrigated crop production.
The water quality of Big Creek is impaired by organic enrichment, oxygen depletion, pathogens, sediment, nutrients and habitat alteration.
“We plan to partner with farmers in the watershed to improve soil health and other conservation improvements through the use of cover crops and minimizing tillage,” said John Rissler, NRCS acting state conservationist.
Big Creek Watershed is part of the larger Loosahatchie River Basin which drains to the Mississippi River. Located in southern Tipton and northern Shelby counties, the area spans north to the cities of Munford and Drummonds and south to Bolton and the Little John communities. The naval base in Millington lies within the watershed.
During extended rain events, flooding is common. Conservation practices provide flood control while protecting farmland, enhancing wildlife habitat, improving impaired streams and rural America’s quality of life through conservation.
“We don’t know if it will stop the flooding, but we know we can increase water infiltration, improve water quality, and increase water holding capacity by improving soil health,” said Rissler.
Published in The Messenger 4.2.13