Shelby County SWCD partners with USDA


Improving water quality in priority watersheds its goal

COLUMBUS – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has announced priority watersheds for 2021 including Loramie Creek Watershed. Ohio producers in this targeted watershed will receive focused financial and technical resources through NRCS Ohio Mississippi River Basin Initiative (MRBI).

MRBI promotes the use of key conservation practices, such as nutrient management, cover crops, animal waste storage structures, and tillage management, to address critical water quality concerns of the region. These practices optimize nitrogen and phosphorus use efficiency in agricultural fields and minimize runoff while improving soil health. The impact of these practices reduces nutrient loading in local water bodies, and eventually, the Gulf of Mexico.

“Farmers recognize the importance of water quality,” said State Conservationist for Ohio Terry Cosby. “These voluntary initiatives provide them with the tools to implement and accelerate on-farm conservation practices to improve the watershed. Local partnerships, like the one that Ohio NRCS has fostered with the area SWCDs, are invaluable in getting farmers the resources they need to deliver the greatest benefits for clean water.”

Ohio MRBI Project: Headwaters Loramie Creek Watershed

Ohio NRCS and Shelby Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) will utilize funds to implement core water quality practices including:

Sheet, Rill and Gulley Erosion Control

Wetlands, Drainage Water Management

Cover Crops

4R Nutrient Management

Grazing Management

Participating in MRBI Individuals interested in applying for MRBI should contact their local NRCS conservationist as soon as possible. Be sure to check the status of your Service Center when you reach out to us. For offices with restrictions on in-person appointments, we are still available by phone, email, and through other digital tools. Your Service Center’s status is available at https://www.farmers.gov/coronavirus/service-center-status.

Applications signed and submitted to NRCS by the January 15 deadline will be evaluated for fiscal year 2021 funding. Visit Ohio NRCS website under “EQIP Funding Categories” for more details. To learn more about EQIP or other technical and financial assistance available through NRCS conservation programs, visit Get Started with NRCS or contact Justin Wagner with your local USDA Service Center 937-492-6520 ext. 3 or justin.wagner@usda.gov. Or you may contact the Shelby SWCD at 937-492-6520 ext.3 or Jason.bruns@usda.gov.

Improving water quality in priority watersheds its goal