The Environmental Quality Incentives Program

Source: USDA

EQIP is a popular cost-share program partnering farmers with the USDA to plan and implement on-farm improvements that conserve natural resources (including clean air or water, healthy soils, and more efficient energy systems). These improvements can also increase farm profitability and resilience to weather events. EQIP funding will cover 50-75% of the total project cost (growers will cover the remaining 50-75% of total costs). Read below for specific EQIP grant initiatives.

EQIP On-Farm Energy Initiative

Do you want to make your operation more energy efficient but haven’t had the time, expertise, or funding to realize this goal? The On-Farm Energy Initiative can help you make your energy goals a reality. This program grants financial assistance for an energy audit offering recommendations for energy improvements along with estimated costs and payback periods. Farmers can then apply for a second EQIP grant to cover new hardware and installation for long-term energy efficiency improvements.

EQIP High Tunnel Grant

If you want to extend your growing season, improve your soil health, and reduce energy costs, consider applying for a High Tunnel Grant. This funding helps to cover the installation of a High Tunnel or a “hoop house” so that you can grow more efficiently over a longer season.

EQIP Air Quality 

If you want to improve pollution, air cleanliness, or air odor in your community, then an EQIP Air Quality Grant may be the right choice for you. This cost-share program supports projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, pollutants, and volatile organic compounds.

EQIP Organic Initiative

The EQIP Organic Initiative offers financial and technical assistance for organic farmers to improve a natural resource concern (including clear air or water, healthy soils, and more efficient energy systems). Certified organic producers, farmers transitioning to organic certification, or non-certified producers with organic sales of less than $5000 are eligible to apply for funding.

Colorado River Salinity Basin Control Program

Producers located adjacent to the Colorado River in Utah, Colorado or Wyoming may be eligible for EQIP funding to protect this waterway. These grants are designed to support salinity control and ultimately improve agriculture and economic outcomes in communities impacted by the Colorado River.