New Mexico Conservation Stewardship Program

New Mexico Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)


The Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) is a voluntary conservation program that encourages producers to address resource concerns in a comprehensive manner by:

  • Undertaking additional conservation activities; and
  • Improving, maintaining, and managing existing conservation activities.

CSP is available on Tribal and private agricultural lands and non-industrial private forest land in all 50 States and the Caribbean and Pacific Islands Areas. The program provides equitable access to all producers, regardless of operation size, crops produced, or geographic location. The Secretary of Agriculture has delegated the authority for CSP to the NRCS Chief.

Highlights and Announcements

New CSP Fact Sheet - 08/07/2009 (PDF; 44KB)

CSP Self-Screening Checklist And Activity List

The documents below require Adobe Acrobat Reader:

2009 Conservation Stewardship Self-Screening Checklist (PDF; 98 KB)

2009 Conservation Stewardship Program Activity List (PDF; 98 KB)

Enhancement Activity Job Sheets

"Enhancement" means a type of conservation activity used to treat natural resources and improve conservation performance. Enhancements are installed at a level of management intensity that exceeds the sustainable level for a given resource concern, and those directly related to a practice standard are applied in a manner that exceeds the minimum treatment requirements of the standard. 

New Mexico Specific Information

Ranking Pools

CSP applicants in NM will compete in one of three "Ranking Pools": Northwest, East and South.

Ranking pool boundaries are shown in the map below:

8 1/2 X 11 Print (PDF; 355 KB)

Within each ranking pool there are two major and three minor sub-pools. NRCS can help applicants understand the definitions of each, but the final decision as to which "sub-pool" an applicant wants to be considered in rests with the applicant:

  • Agricultural Lands (includes range, crop and pasture lands)
    Conventional Applications
    Socially Disadvantaged
    Beginning Farmer and Ranchers
  • Forest Land
    Conventional Applications
    Socially Disadvantaged
    Beginning Farmer and Ranchers

Priority Ranking Concerns

Applicants receive both ranking and performance payment points based on factors identified in the rule, including the number of "Priority Resource Concerns" addressed at the time of application, and during the life of the contract. Priority Resource Concerns for each land use (agricultural lands and forest lands) for each major ranking pool are as follows: 

  • Agricultural Lands: Animals, Energy, Plants, Soil Quality, and Water Quantity
  • Non-Industrial Private Forest Land: Air Quality, Animals, Energy, Plants, and Water Quality

Resource Conserving Crops

As described in national programmatic materials, some producers will qualify for both annual and supplemental payments. In order to quality for supplemental payments, a farmer must implement a (new) resource conserving crop rotation. National criteria on resource conserving crop rotations are available on the national web site. In New Mexico, the following specific crops have been identified as resource conserving crops: Alfalfa; Barley (Fall); Birdsfoot Trefoil; Buckwheat; Clover; Red; Clover; Strawberry; Clover, White; Cowpeas; Fescue; Tall; Hairy Vetch; Medics; Oats; Orchard grass; Peas; Winter Rye (cereal); Ryegrass; Smooth Brome; Sorghum (seed); Sorghum-sudan grass; Sun Hemp; Sweet Clover; Timothy; Triticale; Winter; Wheat; and Wheatgrass, Tall.

Specific requirements for resource conserving crop rotations incorporate both national guidance on rotations, and state specific lists of resource conserving crops.

State Specific Enhancement Requirements

Most details on CSP enhancements have been set nationally (accessible via the links under Enhancement Activity Job Sheets above). However, states have established a variety of supplemental information, such a s species lists and target dates, to supplement the national information. The spreadsheet below includes state specific information and is intended to supplement not replace national enhancement materials.

State Specific Enhancement Detail Spreadsheet (XLS; 80 KB)

Contact New Mexico Conservation Stewardship Program

Contact New Mexico Conservation Stewardship Program

New Mexico


Service Area

National Program