The Kneehill County Agriculture Service Board is committed to preserving and protecting our land, water, and ecosystems through various land care programs. Each program targets a specific land care issue and provides various solutions through consultation, funding, and network connections. The Kneehill County ASB also works with various organizations that together strive to improve environmental stewardship and sustainability.
In an effort to improve and protect water quality within Kneehill County and for those downstream, the Kneehill County ASB has developed a program, for repairing and/or enhancing riparian areas and seasonal water-ways. These areas have a substantial impact on water quality and by establishing grassed buffer zones and restricting livestock access to less sensitive times of the year we can enhance their natural ability to reduce flooding and erosion and increase nutrient and toxin filtration.
The Riparian Restoration Program is funded through the ASB Environmental Funding Stream Grant from Alberta Agriculture & Rural Development. Through this program producers, upon project approval by ASB staff, will be able to receive enough certified grass seed mix to complete their project for FREE. Participants are also eligible for 75% of the costs of other enhancement supplies such as fencing or woody vegetation, up to a maximum of $2000.
This program is open only to Kneehill County ratepayers, and only on lands within County borders. The program will also be on a first come first served basis and will be available for a limited amount of people.
Water Well Decommissioning
Abandoned wells allow for direct access to the aquifer through rusting casings and missing caps. These well access points are where vermin, above ground minerals, nutrients, animal waste, pesticides, and chemicals can directly access and contaminate the aquifers and watershed. There are a number of methods for decommissioning a well which can be completed by a local licensed water well drilling company. www.awwda.ca
Currently, a maximum of $300 per well is being offered to Kneehill County ratepayers to aid in water well-decommissioning costs while funds last. It is operated on first-come, first-serve bases with projects subject to the approval of the Ag Services staff.
Household Water Testing can be completed through Alberta Health Services.
Environmental Farm Plan
The Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) is a voluntary, confidential, whole-farm self-assessment tool that helps producers identify their environmental risks and develop plans to increase environmental sustainability. EFP technicians work together with farmers committed to environmental stewardship and sustainable farm practices to create a well-rounded EFP and enhance their knowledge of best management practices. Recently many commodity groups and product buyers have started to require their producers to have an EFP. Kneehill County has a trained EFP technician available to assist producers in completing their plan. Contact Kneehill County or visit www.albertaefp.com
Other Resources & Funding Sources
For Land Care Program information, please contact: 403-443-5541