Wetland Reserve Program
Conservation Incentive Program Fact Sheet

  • Program Name: Wetland Reserve Program
  • Abbreviation: WRP
  • Primary Goal: Restore Wetlands.
  • Contact Agency: Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Field Offices
  • Where Applicable: Statewide.
  • Other Sources of Information:
    • NRCS Field Offices
    • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Prepared by Virginia State Technical Advisory Committee.

Program Description and Requirements

The Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) is a voluntary program to restore and protect wetlands on private property. The program benefits include providing fish and wildlife habitat, improving water quality, reducing flooding, recharging groundwater, protecting and improving biological diversity, and furnishing recreational and esthetic benefits.

Sign up is on a continuous basis. Landowners who choose to participate in WRP may receive payments for a conservation easement or cost share assistance for a wetland restoration agreement. The landowner will retain ownership but voluntarily limits future use of the land.

The program offers landowners three options: permanent easements, 30-year easements, and restoration cost share agreements of a minimum 10-year duration. Under the permanent easement option, landowners may receive the agricultural value of the land up to a maximum cap and 100 percent of the cost of restoring the land. For the 30-year option, a landowner will receive 75 percent of the easement value and 75 percent cost-share on the restoration. A ten-year agreement is also available that pays 75% of the restoration cost.

To be eligible for WRP, land must be suitable for restoration (formerly wetland and drained) or connect to adjacent wetlands. A landowner continues to control access to the land and may lease the land for hunting, fishing, or other undeveloped recreational activities. At any time, a landowner may request that additional activities be added as compatible uses.

All programs, activities, and services of the conservation partnership are available to people on a nondiscriminatory basis regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, physical ability, political affiliation, and marital or familial status. We are all equal opportunity employers.

Last modified: Thursday, 06-Nov-2014 10:18:29 EST