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NRCS-WA Adopts New Practice Standard to Improve Air Quality, Energy Efficiency

USDA’s Natural Resource and Conservations Service in Washington (NRCS) has adopted a practice standard that will help producers across the state improve air quality and energy efficiency.

Conservation Practice Standard 372 “Combustion System Improvement” is now available to Washington producers interested in defraying the costs associated with the replacement of in use, high-emission tractors and other off road mobile agricultural equipment with new and highly efficient equipment.

The standard is available through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). While NRCS accepts applications for this program year-round, applicants interested in Fiscal Year 2024 funding need to apply no later than October 20, 2023.

The primary goal of this practice is to help farmers and ranchers improve energy efficiency and improve air quality across Washington. The conservation practice targets oxides of nitrogen emissions and energy savings. Any equipment purchased prior to contract execution is ineligible. Submission of a program application does not guarantee funding. Any contracted equipment replaced must be new equipment. The in-use equipment must be discontinued and dismantled when the new equipment is put into use. Payments will not be issued until the new equipment is received and the old equipment is proven to be properly decommissioned.

EQIP is a voluntary, technical, and financial assistance program designed to help farmers, ranchers, forestland owners, and Tribes with the application of conservation measures. The program focuses strongly on conservation planning, conservation implementation, and solving natural resource concerns.

Each applicant must establish themselves as a USDA customer and obtain all Farm Service Agency (FSA) eligibility requirements by November 17, 2023. Please note, Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) determination takes an average three weeks to be processed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It is highly recommended that applicants submit their completed AGI form to FSA several weeks prior to the FSA eligibility determination deadline of November 17, 2023. Submitting your AGI form to FSA on the last day of the application period will result in your AGI eligibility not being met by the deadline for Fiscal Year 2024.

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