Energy Grants and Conservation Cost Shares for Farmers


Kentucky State University's Small Scale Farm Grant

Deadline: August 1, 2019
Funding Amount: Up to $5,000 for farmers and $15,000 for agriculture groups; plus, up to $500 for farmer education
Eligible Entities: Kentucky farmers and Kentucky agriculture groups including farmers markets
Overview: The Kentucky State University's Small Scale Farm Grant was created with the small farmer in mind. The grant application is simple to complete, and the funds can be used to purchase needed equipment related to a proposed project. Applicants can qualify for this grant under one of four categories: aquaculture, USDA certified organic, food insecure area, or value-added products. Farmers markets are often eligible. Previously approved projects have included canning equipment, a water line to a hoop house, a root cellar, a display refrigerator, a cool-bot for vegetables, freezers for keeping meat cool, and maple syrup equipment. Also, there is a separate education application to this program that will help farmers with up to $500 in educational expenses.


Kentucky Conservation: State Cost Share Program

Deadline: On-going
Funding Amounts: Up to $7,500 - 75% cost-share
Eligible Entities: Farmers and Kentucky landowners
Overview: The Kentucky Conservation: State Cost Share Program supports conservation practices in six main areas: Livestock - Animal Feeding, Livestock - Pastureland, Cropland, Forestland, Streambank, and Farmstead. The funds come from the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund. The projects are capped at $7,500 per producer per year, except for animal waste storage which is capped at $20,000. The program provides a 75% payback upon a project's completion. Use the link above to learn more and/or to find your local conservation office to apply. 

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USDA-NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program

Deadline: On-going
Funding Amounts: Cost share - rate varies by project
Eligible Entities: Farmers and landowners
Overview: The purpose of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) EQIP is to protect the land by helping farmers implement voluntary conservation practices. EQIP provides a cost-share through a competitively scored application process. Farmers and owners of cropland, pasture, and forest land are generally eligible. EQIP can help pay for conservation practices that help improve and conserve farm land. These practices include grazing management (stock water systems, fencing, and pasture planting), nutrient management (cover crops and erosion control), pest management, wildlife habitat enhancement, forest stand management, seasonal high tunnels (for seasonal crop extension) and, energy management plans. Contact your local NRCS office to ask for help creating a conservation plan for your farm and how to apply.