Additional $1 million made available for water quality practices

Additional $1 million made available for water quality practices

Posted Aug. 23, 2013

Cost share available for cover crops, no-till/strip-till or nitrification inhibitor
Due to strong demand from Iowa farmers, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey announced Aug. 22 that an additional $1 million in cost share funds have been made available to help farmers implement nutrient reduction practices.

Farmers have already submitted applications for the initial $1.8 million in funding that was made available on Aug. 8 for water quality practices.

“We are extremely pleased by the overwhelming response we have received from farmers and believe this shows their commitment to water quality,” Northey said. “Farmers are matching all these funds, so they are putting up at least $1.8 million of their own money to implement these voluntary, science-based practices to protect water quality.”

The practices that are eligible for this funding are cover crops, no-till or strip-till, or using a nitrification inhibitor when applying fertilizer. Any farmer not already utilizing these practices can apply for assistance. Farmers are only eligible for cost share on up to 160 acres.

The cost share rate for farmers planting cover crops is $25 per acre and for farmers trying no-till or strip till is $10 per acre. Farmers using a nitrapyrin nitrification inhibitor when applying fall fertilizer can receive $3 per acre.

Farmers can contact their local Soil and Water Conservation District office to apply.

To date, more than 700 farmers in 85 of the 100 Soil and Water Conservation Districts in Iowa have applied to participate in the program. Farmers have submitted applications for 71,023 acres of cover crops, to use nitrification inhibitor on 4,019 acres, 770 acres of no-till and 466 acres of strip-till.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship received $3 million in one-time funding to support statewide science-based water quality practices over the next five years. The department has now made $2.8 million available to support these practices this fall.