Recent Conservation Reserve Program Enrollments Signal Changing Priorities
Amber Waves, March 2012
4 Pages Posted: 25 Feb 2016
Date Written: March 23, 2012
USDA's Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), now over 25 years old, removes over 29 million acres (as of October 2011) of environmentally sensitive cropland and pasture from production under 10- to 15-year contracts with farmers. The 2008 Farm Act capped program enrollment at 32 million acres, down from a peak of 36.8 million acres in 2007. The required reduction was achieved by limiting the 2009 contract extension offers to only 1.5 million of the 4.3 million expiring acres, of which 1.1 million were reenrolled. Declining interest in the program may explain the higher-than-usual proportion of offers accepted into the CRP during 2010 and 2011. As the total acreage enrolled via CRP's general signups has declined, enrollment of lands meeting more stringent requirements, including land in one of the many State-Federal conservation partnerships under USDA's Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP), has increased.
Keywords: conservation reserve program, general signup, CREP
JEL Classification: Q24, Q28
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation