The sign-up deadline for the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s (NRCS) Agriculture Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) is set for November 1, 2022. ACEP provides a variety of options for flood-prone cropland or wetland acres. One program option is the Wetland Reserve Easement Partnership (WREP). This option allows landowners to retain the ability to pass a pivot over enrolled acres. This helps to ensure enrolled acres do not negatively impact irrigation of the adjacent cropland acres. Like with the WRE option the landowner is compensated for the enrolled acres and restoration costs.
With the WREP option, the Rainwater Basin Joint Venture (RWBJV) partnership can provide 85% cost-share for infrastructure, such as fencing, livestock watering systems, pivot crossings in the fence, and pivot modifications to facilitate crossing the wetland (e.g., flotation tires) and improve irrigation efficiency (e.g. Variable Rate Irrigation components). The RWBJV can pay up to 100% reimbursement for restoration costs.
Continuous sign-up for the WREP program is currently open. An application cut-off date has been set for November 18, 2022. We have online resources and virtual meetings available below to help you prepare for the WREP signup period. Get started by watching the WREP informational video below.
Learn the Basics of WREP Enrollment
If you’re looking for information on the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership and how to enroll, you’ve come to the right place. Watch this video to get a better understanding of program basics such as eligibility requirements, enrollment steps, and what producers should know as they prepare to sign up for the WREP program.
Contact Your Local USDA Service Center
NRCS administers WREP while conservation planning assistance and technical service is provided by other conservation organizations as well as NRCS. To submit a WREP offer, producers must contact their local USDA NRCS office. NRCS accepts WREP applications year round with application cut-off dates being announced for specific fiscal years. For fiscal year 2022 the current application cut-off date is October 15, 2021. Producers are also encouraged to consult with NRCS easement specialists to discuss conservation goals and options to increase the likelihood that a WREP offer will be accepted.
The NRCS works one-on-one with landowners in Nebraska to help them enroll in local, state, and federal conservation programs such as WREP. For more information, please contact your local NRCS office in the USDA Service Center. You can find your local service center at the following link: https://www.farmers.gov/service-center-locator. A map of the current Nebraska NRCS operations and area easement teams is also available below.