Sustainability Matters is hosting a workshop geared toward farmers to provide information on available help for funding conservation practices.
The “Get Paid to Go Green” workshop to discuss cost-sharing programs is scheduled for 5-7 p.m. Feb. 25 at Swover Creek Farms Brewery in Edinburg.
“Conservation programs can be expensive but they are important,” said Sari Carp, executive director for Sustainability Matters.
One example she provided was that it is important for water quality and cattle health to keep livestock fenced out of streams. To do that, however, requires the installation of fencing and alternative water sources, an expensive proposition.
Another example is to plant trees to prevent soil erosion.
She said most farmers are focusing on the profitability of their land and can’t just spend money on items like this, even if they are important.
“On average through these programs, the government covers 75 percent of the cost to the landowners,” Carp said.
Farmers and agricultural landowners can learn at the workshop about grants for stream exclusion, livestock waterers, tree planting, wildlife and pollinator habitat, invasive controls, erosion controls, rain gardens, rainwater harvesting, and green roofs. Representatives from the Farm Service Agency, Lord Fairfax Soil and Water Conservation District, Natural Resources Conservation Services, Virginia Cooperative Extension and the Virginia Department of Forestry will attend the workshop to help attendees understand what the programs cover, and who is eligible.
The workshop is being held at Swover Creek for a reason.
“Swover Creek takes advantage of some of these programs,” Carp said. “People can talk to them about what they are doing, what they are not doing, find out what the process was like.”
Space is limited. Register at go.sustainabilitymatters.earth/getpaid.
Another “Get Paid to Go Green” program will be held in May for all landowners and will focus on non-farming applications.