The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Texas is accepting applications for the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). While NRCS accepts easement applications on a continuous basis, applications for the next funding consideration must be submitted by March 1.
“Easements are sometimes a perfect fit for a landowner who is looking to protect his or her land from future development or to protect and improve wetlands or provide critical habitat for wildlife,” said Kristy Oates, NRCS state conservationist for Texas. “We encourage Indian tribes, state and local governments, nongovernmental organizations and private landowners to call their local NRCS office to find out how to apply.”
ACEP Agricultural Land Easements provide financial assistance to eligible partners for purchasing easements that protect the agricultural use and conservation values of eligible land. In the case of working farms, the program helps farmers and ranchers keep their land in agriculture.
ACEP Wetlands Reserve Easements allow landowners to successfully restore, enhance and protect habitat for wildlife on their lands, reduce damage from flooding, recharge groundwater and provide outdoor recreational and educational opportunities. Tribal landowners also have the option of enrolling in 30-year contracts.
To learn about ACEP and other technical and financial assistance available through NRCS, call your local USDA Service Center or visit www.nrcs.usda.gov.