Shell Creek Watershed landowners eligible for special water quality initiative

LINCOLN — The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting applications for the Shell Creek State Water Quality Initiative. The goal of this initiative is to improve water quality in the Shell Creek Watershed, located in portions of Antelope, Boone, Madison, Platte and Colfax counties. This Initiative provides eligible landowners financial assistance to install conservation practices like terraces, waterways and sediment control basins, to reduce soil erosion and improve water quality. Landowners have until April 21, 2017, to apply for assistance.

This watershed was identified by the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ) as having an impairment of one or more beneficial uses such as recreation or aquatic habitat. In addition, this watershed was selected to complement the ongoing effort to provide producers a wider range of options to improve water quality through the Nonpoint Source Water Quality Grants-Section 319 program activities with NDEQ, NRCS and the Lower Platte North Natural Resources District.

Interested landowners and operators should check with their local NRCS office to see if their farm or ranch is located in the eligible area. Additional information about the Shell Creek State Water Quality Initiative is available by contacting NRCS at the USDA Service Centers in Columbus (402) 564-0506, Schuyler (402) 352-5200, and Wahoo (402) 443-4106, or the Lower Platte North NRD office.