Environmental farm programs enhanced

The federal and Saskatchewan governments have announced enhancements to environmental farm programs under Growing Forward 2.

The list of beneficial management practices in the farm stewardship program has been increased to 24, including five new ones and improvements to seven others.

As well, a new online portal for environmental farm plans has been established.

New beneficial management practices include native rangeland grazing management and fencing, grain bag rollers, carcass disposal, water flow and erosion control and environmental solutions, according to the province.

Funding varies depending on the project but is generally 50 to 75 percent of eligible costs.

Changes to existing beneficial management practices include:

  • Increasing the funding caps for riparian area grazing and fencing, protecting high risk erodible and saline soils, farmyard runoff control and irrigation equipment modification.
  • Increasing the funding level for native plant establishment.
  • Making 13 beneficial management practices accessible only through environmental farm plans and 11 eligible through an environmental farm plan or an agri-environmental group plan.
  • Replacing the used oil, filter and fluid storage beneficial management practice with used oil storage.

“Saskatchewan’s farmers and ranchers have made a commitment to environmental sustainability, and we’re proud to support their efforts,” said provincial agriculture minister Lyle Stewart.

“Through farmers’ environmental farm plans and the implementation of beneficial management practices, our province is better positioned to improve the quality of our soil, water, air and the biodiversity of our resources.”

The beneficial management practices are implemented as environmental farm plans are completed.

The new web portal is at efp.saskatchewan.ca and will allow participants to create, review and update their plans at their own pace online.

More information on the farm stewardship program is available at www.agriculture.gov.sk.ca/GF2-FarmStewardship.

karen.briere@producer.com

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