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Greene County Success Stories

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Conservation Saves Water and Money in Greene County

Richard and Charles Stewart grew up farming on their Dad’s dairy farm and have always known about the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). When they began having water quality concerns, they knew where to seek assistance.

Their operation was already set up with a waste management system including a flush system and lagoon; however, the level of material in the lagoon had built up and needed to be applied to their hay fields to make room for additional effluent. Unfortunately, the farm was on a strict budget and the cost of pumping the lagoon effluent to the fields was prohibitive.

Richard and Charles consulted with their local NRCS office to see what options were available. The Stewarts were encouraged to sign up for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) cost-share assistance for nutrient management to pump the effluent out to the fields at agronomic rates. They applied and received EQIP funding for the project.

The plan that was developed removed some of the material from the lagoon while at the same time reducing the amount of commercial fertilizer that would have to be purchased. Along with the cost-share funding, the reduction in fertilizer cost helped the Stewarts stay close to their pre-defined budget for the farm.

Additional assistance came from the Piedmont Soil & Water Conservation District and Oconee River RC&D in the form of pump-out services provided at a lower cost than possible from contractors. The service provided the equipment and an operator to assist in the process.

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