Biodiversity BMPs

Biodiversity BMPs2024-02-21T11:37:32-08:00

Cost Shared Ratio: 50% or 90%, if indicated below

Maximum total funding amount for all projects undertaken in the Biodiversity category: Up to $25K unless otherwise noted

Application Window: Opens January 30, 2024

Submission Window: February 13, 2024 at 9 AM to February 20, 2024 at 4 PM

Project Completion Date: + 140 days from Project Approval/Start Date

Categories: (see Project Details)

  • Habitat structures and enhancement*
  • Protection of wildlife (flushing bars)
  • Creation of pollinator habitat
  • Stackyard fencing
  • Establishment of shelterbelts or tree buffers

BMPs eligible for Fraser Valley Flood funding are indicated with * and Orange text.

Eligibility Criteria

Eligible Applicants

Applicants must:

  • Have an Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) that is less than 5 years old and reflects the current farm or ranch operation. The EFP must be renewed if it is more than 5 years old, or if there have been changes made to the farm or ranch operation that could have impacted the environmental risk. This does not imply the farm operation will be able to access BMP program dollars nor does it imply the farm cap will be reset.
  • The farm or ranch operation must be in British Columbia and have valid “Farm Class” land as designated by the BC Assessment Authority or be a First Nations agricultural operation with designated authority to use the land.
  • The applicant must have a valid business (GST) number.
  • Access to certain BMPs require additional assessments, planning or design that must completed prior to approval (e.g., Nutrient or Riparian Management Plans). These BMPs are “linked”, and the planning BMP must be completed and submitted prior to beginning a project. Concurrency of planning and/or technical assessment may be allowed for projects that are not contingent on a final design for the project construction activity or may be waived at the discretion of the Program Manager. All Planning BMPs require prior approval.

Ineligible Activities and Expenses

Unless specified in a BMP Practice Code, the following costs are ineligible:

  • Fertilizer, seed, and crop protection products
  • Fees for permits, approvals, or legal activities
  • Typical farm equipment and related accessories or attachments (including tractors, skid steers and trailers)
  • Costs of ongoing activities
  • Maintenance or repair costs
  • Financing charges, loan interest payments, bank fees and charges
  • Maintenance or extended warranties on equipment, electronics, or technology purchases
  • New building construction including sheds, barns, or storages (for products or by-products)
  • Expenses incurred prior to approval, or expenses after the project completion date unless consent is received from the program.

Additional Eligibility Requirements & Notices

  • Stacking of funds from other government programs is not allowed.

Applications

Applicants will apply through the IAF Client Portal. REMINDER: Do not wait to start this process – it can take up to two business days to validate your organization!

The application process will consist of:

REMINDER: Do not wait to start this process – it can take up to two business days to validate your organization!

  • Go to IAF’s Client Portal
  • Create a personal profile (name and email)
  • Provide organization information, including:
    • Name
    • Contact details
    • Type of organization
    • BC ID / CRA numbers
    • Primary contact
    • And more

Select the Beneficial Management Practices Program from Funding Opportunities, and provide:

  • Applicant type
  • Project start & end dates
  • Alignment with program priorities
  • Description of key activities, who will oversee/undertake work, and timeline
  • Demonstrate how all technical, environmental, regulatory standards and/or requirements (as applicable) are met.
  • Copies of relevant documents (e.g., permits, licensing, CBA, documentation from Dam Safety or Water Authorization Program staff)
  • Performance measurement information
  • Funding request / project budget
  • and more!

Applicants may be required to provide supplementary materials in support of their application (e.g., budget, water licence, change approval). These documents can be uploaded through the IAF Client Portal as attachments to the application.

IAF staff are available to answer questions regarding eligible activities, costs and/or the application process. IAF may also contact applicants for additional information or clarification to assess their application. Applicants can contact bmp@iafbc.ca with any questions about the program or to receive support in developing their application.

Applicants are encouraged to include only activities they are confident will be completed on time and within budget limits.

Need help with IAF’s Client Portal?

We’ve created a number of tutorials and FAQs about the IAF Client Portal to help you navigate this resource successfully.

Review and Adjudication

NEW THIS YEAR: Applicants are invited to start (i.e. draft, edit & view) their application prior to the submission window opening.

Upon submission of an application, all BMP applications will be reviewed under the first-come, first-serve model for 2024/25 intakes. Project applications are screened and reviewed by IAF Staff. This review involves:

  • Ensuring application completeness.
  • Organization/Applicant eligibility check.
  • Project alignment and eligibility check.

Applications will be considered until all available funding is committed. All decisions regarding application status are final. All applicants will receive a funding decision email from IAF.

Notifications & Obligations

Funding Notifications & Contracts

If the project is approved, IAF will inform the applicant of the details of the decision and any associated terms and conditions by email within four to six weeks of the application close date.
Funding is application and project-specific and must be used for the approved project and related expenses. Funds are non-transferable.
Retroactive costs will not be considered.
Projects funded in 2024 may begin on or after April 1, 2024, and must be completed by set dates determined by category. If the project is not approved, the applicant will receive a written response from IAF.

Changes to Contracted Projects

If you are not able to complete your project or require a change, please inform the IAF Team as soon as possible using the IAF Client Portal.

Funding Acknowledgement

This program is funded by the Government of BC and/or Canada, as such acknowledgement of funding is required when publicly communicating about a project and/or funding. To ensure appropriate acknowledgement, all communications and marketing materials, including public announcements or social media posts, must be pre-approved by the IAF Communications Team. Materials can be submitted via the IAF Client Portal.

Reporting Requirements

Successful applicants must complete a final report prior to receiving funds from the program. This report must be filled out and submitted to IAF along with all invoices for the project to be considered for funding reimbursement. It is important that the final report is submitted on time and with all required information. Expenses will be reimbursed based on the submitted receipts, the approved project budget and the corresponding cost-share ratio. All reporting will be completed via the IAF Client Portal.

Project Details

Looking for a qualified contractor to execute a plan and/or design? We’ve assembled a list of verified contractors for your reference here.

BMP Category

(Practice Code)

Eligible BMPs and Costs Required plans or actions to be completed prior to or concurrent with a project
Habitat Structures and Enhancement*

(2204)

Eligible:

Funding to support the purchase, construction and installation of species-specific habitat structures and enhancements to natural habitat for wildlife and specific species at risk. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Bat houses and/or bat roosts
  • Specialized nest boxes for birds (e.g. barn owl, barn swallow, prothonotary warbler)
  • Winter bird roosts
  • Turtle sunning platforms
  • Snake hibernacula (overwintering sites)
  • Turtle nesting sites

Protective structures (i.e. cattle guards) to prevent nest relocation.

Protection of wildlife (flushing bars)

(2206)

Eligible:

  • Flushing bars on haying/silage cutting equipment to reduce wildlife mortality

Ineligible:

Equipment or components directly related to cutting or harvest of forage.

Creating Pollinator Habitat

(2207)

Eligible:

  • Establishment of pollinator strips or other perennial cover for pollinator habitat
  • Development of pollinator nesting sites to support pollinators and plant species at risk
  • Establishment of pollinator habitat for other biodiversity purposes in fields or field margins of existing cropland (area planted with high value plants that pollinators like)

Ineligible:

  • On-going maintenance
  • Costs associated with acquiring / planting invasive plant species
  • Opportunity costs associated with payments for land taken out of production
  • Landscape quality or landscaping type plantings

Commercial fruit trees, Christmas trees, ornamentals, afforestation, woodlot establishment and reforestation.

Biodiversity Management Plan (2801) is required
Stackyard Fencing

(2209)

Eligible:

  • Stackyard fencing to protect harvested feeds, forage and silage stored by farmers and ranchers from wildlife
  • Eligible permanent fencing inclusive of all costs including in-kind labour
  • Portable electric fencing, set-ups, including solar battery chargers, battery and initial line and post purchases
  • Monitoring and management equipment

Ineligible:

  • Perimeter fencing
  • Pasture seeding and establishment costs
  • Pasture renovation
  • Repair and maintenance of existing riparian erosion control or riparian pasture management systems and equipment (e.g., can’t be used to repair existing fence)

Note: Approval of projects will be contingent upon adherence to all federal, provincial, and municipal guidelines and regulations for project design and implementation

Establishment of shelterbelts, or tree buffers

(1901)

Eligible:

  • The desired outcome of the shelterbelt or buffer establishment must be identified in the plan and reflected in the proposed design and species mix
  • Tree materials only for planting around fields and buildings
  • Staking to support young trees from winter damage
  • Buffers can be single or multi-row
  • Maintenance for the year after the planting year can be included as part of the project proposal but is subject to the availability of funding in following program year
  • Renovations or supplemental plantings will be considered

Ineligible:

  • Establishment of trees or shrubs that are intended for harvesting for economic benefit within 15 years such as fruit orchards, Christmas trees, ornamental nursery stock
  • Block or plantation style plantings
  • Buffer and shelterbelt renovations costs incurred after establishment, or the purchase and relocation of established trees
  • Landscape quality or landscaping type plantings
  • Breaking and reseeding of existing native forages
  • Costs for planting cover or companion crops

Seed containing noxious or prohibited weeds as listed in The Weed Control Act.

Vegetative Buffer Plan (3401)

A Vegetative Buffer Plan is required for shelterbelt or buffer plantings in all regional districts of Vancouver Island, the Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys, Thompson- Nicola, Fraser Valley, and Metro Vancouver areas

Apply

Biodiversity BMPs Program Dates

Application Window: Opens January 30, 2024

Submission Window: February 13, 2024 – February 20, 2024

Thank you to all who submitted an application!

Resources

FAQ

Will IAF consider multi-year BMP Projects for funding approval?2024-02-05T14:48:45-08:00

IAF will consider multi-year projects for the current intakes, however these will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Applications that intend to span more than one fiscal year must indicate the work that will occur in each project year and the budget associated with that work. It should be noted that projects that span more than one fiscal year will still only be entitled to the same Maximum Total Funding Amount for the one Fiscal Year (for example, for Riparian and Grazing Projects, the maximum total funding amount would remain $70,000). Requests for consideration must include justification for extending the project beyond the standard project completion timeline. 

Why are Water Infrastructure BMPs not offered in 2024?2024-02-23T14:31:52-08:00

Water Infrastructure applications may reopen in 2024.

Subscribe to the newsletter to learn more about future application intake windows.

When will payment(s) be received?2024-02-05T14:48:10-08:00

IAF provides payments by EFT (direct deposit). To get your EFT information set up to ensure timely delivery of your payment(s) please follow the directions provided here to update your client portal.

Payments will be made based on actual expenses reported, and payments will be made in arrears. All projects require an approved report to receive payment.

When can I expect to hear back about a funding decision?2024-02-05T14:47:42-08:00

Funding decisions for complete applications will be communicated to applicants within 8 weeks of the program’s close or the application submission if in the case of an ongoing intake window.

IAF will return incomplete applications to applicants via the IAF Client Portal for resubmission with missing information/clarifications requested. IAF will complete adjudication and notification of funding decisions within eight weeks of application resubmission.

What proof of equipment (or similar) purchase do you require?2024-02-05T14:46:49-08:00

When reporting, you may be asked to submit an image of the equipment (or similar) serial number; this serial number must match the serial number on the submitted invoice.

What is the difference between the application and submission window?2024-02-05T14:51:19-08:00

The Beneficial Management Practices (BMP) Program is a first-come, first-serve program. For the 2024 application window, we heard feedback that applicants wanted to have time to review the application before submissions start to see the specific application questions and requirements and to start preparing their application before submissions begin.

The application window is the two-week period where an applicant is able to view, draft, and save their application. The submission window is the 6-day period where an applicant can submit their application.

What if my project requires a permit?2024-02-05T14:47:15-08:00

Please provide the status of the permit and any supporting documentation at the time of application.

My total project costs are more than the funding cap for the program, what do I do?2024-02-05T14:49:59-08:00

Please only submit costs up to the cap of the category/project. If you exceed the program/project cap on your application, you will receive an error and will need to adjust your application details before you are able to submit.

Is GST an eligible cost as part of my project expenses?2024-02-05T14:45:45-08:00

No, GST is not eligible for reimbursement.

I cannot submit my application due to a ‘total funding requested’ error, how do I submit?2024-02-05T14:49:26-08:00

If you receive an error similar to the error below, please adjust your project costs to be below or at the maximum funding amount. We acknowledge that projects may cost more to complete – but the request may not exceed the amount due to system limitations.

How long does it take to register my organization? Is this included in the deadline?2024-02-05T14:45:13-08:00

Your organization must register through the IAF Client Portal to apply to IAF programs. Please note, if you have not already registered, this process can take up to 2 business days and must be completed before the application deadline.

How long can I take to complete my project?2024-02-05T14:46:25-08:00

The completion date of your project is dependent on the BMP category you apply for, as well as the project start date. Please see Important Dates for details.

Can I change the BMP category on my application after I have started?2024-02-05T14:50:26-08:00

Yes. However, please remove all numbers entered in the previously chosen BMP practice code. If you do not remove the previously entered numbers, they will affect the total funding requested calculation at the end of your application.

Beneficial Management Practices Program Guide

Download the Beneficial Management Practices Program Guide.

Funding Acknowledgement Requirements

Download the Funding Acknowledgement Requirements for the Beneficial Management Practices Program.

Land Owner Statement

Download the Land Owner Statement for the Beneficial Management Practices Program.

Need a Contractor?

IAF has assembled a list of verified contractors that are able to help execute your plan/design.

Have an Active Project?

Please visit the program’s Project Resource Hub for more information.

Have a Question?

Contact the IAF Team

Please note: the Government of BC may, from time to time, give instructions to IAF in relation to the delivery and administration of this program. IAF must and will comply with those instructions.

Funding for this program has been provided by the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a $3.5-billion, 5-year agreement between the federal, provincial and territorial governments to strengthen the competitiveness, innovation, and resiliency of the agriculture, agri‐food and agri‐based products sector. The program is delivered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC.

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