*From USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service:
GAINESVILLE, Fl., March 31, 2015 – Applications are due May 15 for USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service Agricultural Conservation Easements Program (ACEP), which provides financial assistance for farmers, ranchers and forest landowners to establish conservation easements.
Indian tribes, state and local governments, non-governmental organizations and private landowners can contact their local NRCS office to find out how to apply.
The program is comprised of two types of easements: agricultural and wetlands. Agricultural easements prevent productive working lands from being converted to non-agricultural uses and protect land devoted to food production. Cropland, rangeland, grassland, pastureland and nonindustrial private forestland are eligible.
Wetland reserve easements restore and enhance wetlands and improve habitat. Eligible lands include farmed or converted wetlands that can be successfully and cost-effectively restored.