Your forestlands are an important natural resource, and there are literally billions of dollars in cost-share programs available for forest landowners. Most likely you are already carrying out management practices that would allow you to qualify for payments or reimbursements for the management of your land. There are many programs available through state and federal governments that can assist private landowners with natural resource conservation on their land. The primary cost share programs are included in the conservation title of the Farm Bill, which is due to expire on September 30th of this year. Congress is currently in the midst of hammering out differences between House and Senate passed versions of the bill.
In 2011, USDA enrolled a record number of acres of private working lands in conservation programs, working with more than 500,000 farmers, foresters and ranchers to implement conservation practices that clean the air we breathe, filter the water we drink, and prevent soil erosion. The majority of conservation programs administered by the federal government
are authorized in the conservation title of the Farm Bill, which gets reauthorized every five years (read Farm Bill update on page 34).
This article highlights cost-share programs available under the Conservation Title of the Farm Bill.
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|Without a Farm Bill Conservation Title, we would have:
| 13.5 million fewer pheasants
|450 million additional tons of topsoil disappearing every year
|2.2 million fewer ducks
|An additional 170,000 miles of unprotected streams
|40 million fewer acres of wildlife habitat