The Growing Forward 2 (GF2) Cost-Share funding Assistance Program for Producers has been enhanced with four new best management practices (BMPs) categories added and enhancements to several existing BMPs. GF2 funding is available to support farmers to make changes in their farming operations and encourages actions with multi-benefits for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving water quality and supporting soil health. These enhancements will support producers to transition to low carbon production and encourage energy efficiency and energy conservation on-farms.
Highlights of the new BMPs and changes in existing GF2 BMPs are below. This funding is delivered by the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA). Please see the OSCIA’s website www.ontariosoilcrop.org/oscia-programs/growing-forward-2/ for the program guide, application forms, and full details on how producers can participate.
Highlights – What’s New in GF2?
Four new BMP categories have been added:
Reducing greenhouse gas emissions…
- A13 … from indoor agriculture facilities such as greenhouses, livestock barns and grain dryers (35% to cap of $100,000)
- A14 … through geothermal heating and cooling (35% to cap of $100,000)
- A15 … through on-farm energy efficiency and energy conservation measures (35% to cap of $30,000)
- A16 … and benefiting soil health and water quality through equipment modifications (35% to cap of $20,000)
Enhancements in several other BMP categories:
The maximum available cost-share per project has been updated, along with selected criteria, in select project categories:
- A.0.2 Planning (increased from $5,000 to $10,000 and now specifying that electrical/fossil fuel energy metering and monitoring systems including submeters are eligible)
- A.3 Land application of manure (increased from $7,000 to $10,000 and expanded from being available within restricted geography to now being available province-wide)
- A.5 Cover Crops (increased from $3,000 to $10,000 and expanded from a maximum of 100 acres to a maximum of 200 acres)
- A.11 Actions for biodiversity/habitat enhancements (increased from $15,000 to $25,000
A new tool, the GO-CALC – Greenhouse Gas Ontario Covered Agriculture Calculator is also being rolled out to support producers applying in A.13 to determine greenhouse gas emissions reductions resulting from their projects. This tool has been developed by OMAFRA staff who are supporting the development of new programming for “covered agriculture”.
There are two application intakes remaining for producers to participate in GF2.
- April 4, 2017 to April 18, 2017
- May 12, 2017 to June 1, 2017
Note, all projects must be completed by December 15, 2017 and all claims with paid invoices submitted to OSCIA by January 15, 2018. This is the final year of the GF2 Funding Assistance Program.