Up to $15 million is available nationally this year to help eligible conservation partners protect, restore and enhance critical wetlands on agricultural lands through the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership (WREP).
WREP is a voluntary program through which NRCS signs agreements with eligible partners to leverage resources to carry out high priority wetland protection, restoration and enhancement and to improve wildlife habitat. The program is open to state and local governments, tribes, conservation groups and other organizations. WREP helps facilitate conservation easements with private landowners to protect and restore wetlands on farms and ranches.
Conservation easements enable landowners to adopt a variety of conservation practices that improve the function and condition of wetlands. The voluntary nature of NRCS’ easement programs enables effective integration of wetland restoration on working landscapes, providing benefits to farmers and ranchers who enroll in the program, as well as benefits to the local and rural communities where the wetlands exist.
This year, NRCS is encouraging partners to propose projects that focus on improving water quality as well as habitat on working landscapes in high-priority areas, including sagebrush. Proposals must be submitted to the Oregon NRCS state office by April 24, 2017.
For more information about this program and to discuss a project proposal, contact Bari Williams, easement specialist at 503-414-3226 or Bari.Williams@or.usda.gov.
Click here to learn more about NRCS easement programs in Oregon.