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Conservation Corner

NRCS Special EQIP Initiatives

Mon, March 11, 2019

U. S. Department of Agriculture – Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) of Illinois will offer funding for the following Landscape Conservation Initiatives throughout the state: the Mississippi River Basin Healthy Watersheds Initiative (MRBI) and the National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI). Producers who have agricultural, pasture, or forest land in an established initiative project area can apply for assistance through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). Using this program, they can implement a range of conservation practices that will improve water quality, decrease soil erosion, and improve wildlife habitat.

To compete for funds in the initiative project areas, producers must complete and submit an application by one of two cutoff dates, April 19 and May 17, 2019.  NRCS encourages producers to apply for EQIP financial assistance at any time throughout the year, as they accept applications on a continuous basis.

Contact your local NRCS field office to obtain more details about a specific initiative and to see if your land or farm is located in one of the project areas. To learn more about NRCS programs and services in Illinois, visit NRCS online at

The following is a list of Initiative projects and the counties/watersheds where 2019 funding is available:

MRBI—Mississippi River Basin Initiative

Clinton Lake – Includes portions of DeWitt, McLean and Piatt Counties
Crow Creek West/Clear Creek – Includes portions of Bureau, LaSalle, Marshall, Putnam and Stark Counties
Upper Macoupin Creek – Includes portions of Macoupin County
Vermilion Headwaters – Includes portions of Ford, Iroquois, Livingston and McLean Counties

NWQI - National Water Quality Initiative_

Douglas Creek Watershed – Includes portions of St. Clair County
Crooked Creek-Bon Pas Watershed – Includes portions of Richland, Wabash, Edwards, and Lawrence Counties
Lake Vermilion Watershed – Includes portions of Vermilion County
Lake De Revey Watershed – Includes portions of Vermilion County
Painter Creek Watershed – Includes portions of Vermilion County
Lake Bloomington – Money Creek Watershed – Includes portions of McLean County
Blue Mound – Money Creek Watershed – Includes portions of McLean County