Tuesday, October 20, 2020

NRCS-PA Offers Support To Urban Farmers In Harrisburg, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh

U.S.D.A. Natural Resources Conservation Service-PA has developed a new funding opportunity for individuals or groups producing agricultural crops in designated urban areas in Pennsylvania.  Applications due December 18.

NRCS is offering an urban agricultural project through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) to provide financial and technical assistance to urban farmers to address natural resource concerns by applying conservation practices.

One of the practices offered through EQIP for urban farmers is a ‘hoop house,’ or what NRCS calls a seasonal high tunnel. Other practices available to treat resource concerns are cover crops, nutrient management, and pollinator habitat.

The EQIP urban agricultural project is being offered to producers in Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia.

The purpose of the project is to improve natural resources while growing fruits and vegetables. 

“There is a pressing need for locally grown produce in urban areas, and for that reason NRCS established this project to support urban agriculture,” explains Denise Coleman, State Conservationist in Pennsylvania. “Through EQIP, a seasonal high tunnel can be installed, which will extend the growing season in an environmentally safe manner and allow farmers to produce crops beyond the normal growing season.”

Individuals or groups interested in applying to receive financial assistance through EQIP should fill out an application for the program and establish records at their local USDA Service Center. 

Visit the NRCS-PA Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) webpage for more information.   Questions should be directed to:  Harrisburg: 717-921-2378; Pittsburgh: 724-919-5147; and Philadelphia: 484-786-7300.

For more information on landowner technical and financial assistance, visit the Natural Resources Conservation Service-PA webpage.

Related Articles:

-- DEP Grants Available To Help Farmers Reduce Nutrient Pollution, Small Businesses With Energy Efficiency Projects

-- DEP Accepting Applications For Farm Conservation Planning Grants In Chesapeake Bay Watershed

[Posted: October 20, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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