Funding is now available to ranchers in the Bi-State area who want to pursue projects that will improve sage-grouse habitat and water quality on their land.
The USDAs Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) has created an $8 million fund to support initiatives conserving the Bi-State population of greater sage-grouse and enhancing ranch water quality in the Bi-State region of eastern California and western Nevada.
Eastern Sierra Land Trust spearheaded the funding request for this new Livestock in Harmony with Bi-State Sage-Grouse RCPP with ten other national, state, regional, and private partners.
How This RCPP Works:
This program is designed to assist agricultural producers in the Bi-State region who want to adopt conservation practices on land they own or manage. It offers financial assistance to ranchers and landowners who wish to pursue projects that will restore sage-grouse and other wildlife habitat, improve agricultural water quality, conserve private ranchlands, and upgrade agricultural infrastructure.
The RCPP can help cover the costs of conservation projects that protect wetlands, conserve sage-grouse habitat and sagebrush systems, and safeguard productive ranchlands against development or conversion. Awarded in 2017, this $8 million funding pool is available until 2022, and is only accessible to agricultural producers in the Bi-State area.
For projects to be considered for funding through this RCPP, they must focus on one or both of the following goals:
- Permanent protection of ranches containing grasslands of special significance and/or wetlands, especially those containing habitat for the Bi-State greater sage-grouse.
- Implementation of pasture and rangeland management practices to improve water quality, wetland habitat, and/or sagebrush systems.
Landowners can apply for this RCPP funding through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). Of the $8M in NRCS funding, $7,235,000 will go to agricultural and wetlands conservation easement purchases through ACEP, and $765,000 will go to EQIP projects.
Learn more about the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) for and .
Learn more about the .
Livestock in Harmony with Bi-State Sage-Grouse Project Area
The Project Area for this RCPP is denoted above, in red. This region, called the Bi-State, encompasses an area approximately 170 miles long and up to 60 miles wide. It includes portions of Douglas, Lyon, Carson City, Mineral, and Esmeralda Counties in Nevada, and portions of Inyo, Mono, and Alpine Counties of California in total, an area of 7,000 square miles.
Private landowners within the area designated above are eligible for project funding assistance through this RCPP. Under some circumstances, ranchers with the authority to operate on public lands (e.g. a grazing lease or permit) in this area are also eligible for funding.
Apply for Project Funding
Any landowner or organization interested in pursuing a project that will benefit the goals of this RCPP is encouraged to contact Susanna Danner, ESLT Land Conservation Program Director, at (760) 873-4554 or email@example.com.
To have your project considered in the 2019 funding cycles, proposals must be submitted by April 19, 2019 for ACEP and by June 20, 2019 for EQIP.
Applications are accepted year-round, and projects are evaluated for eligibility and rankings one or more times per year; please contact ESLT or your local NRCS office for more information.
RCPP activities related to Bi-State sage-grouse habitat will be prioritized based on Bi-State Action Plan recommendations. To learn more about the Bi-State Action Plan, visit .
Frequently Asked Questions
For more information about the Livestock in Harmony with Bi-State Sage-Grouse RCPP or for assistance with an EQIP or ACEP application, please contact Susanna Danner, ESLT Land Conservation Program Director, at (760) 873-4554 or firstname.lastname@example.org.