Environmental Quality Incentives Program


EQIP objectives, as stated in the 2002 Farm Bill, are to promote agricultural production and environmental quality as compatible national goals, and to optimize environmental benefits. EQIP provides assistance to producers to install and maintain conservation practices that enhance soil, water, and related natural resources, while sustaining production of food and fiber. EQIP assists producers to make beneficial, cost effective changes to cropping systems, grazing management systems; waste management systems associated with livestock, and other practices on agricultural land.

Individuals or entities engaged in the production of crops or livestock on eligible land may participate in the EQIP program.  EQIP offers contracts that provide incentive payments and cost-sharing to implement conservation practices. EQIP contracts have a minimum contract length of one year after the last scheduled practice is completed.  The maximum contract length is 10 years. EQIP activities are carried out according to a conservation plan and schedule that NRCS develops with the participant.  This plan identifies the appropriate conservation practice (or practices) that will address identified resource concerns and provide environmental benefits.  The participant agrees to implement practices as scheduled in the contract and according to Maryland NRCS conservation practice standards and designs.

Program Sign-up and Application Information

Links to Other Useful Documents for the EQIP Program