The US Conservation Reserve Program: The evolution of an enrollment mechanism | Land Portal

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Date of publication: 
April 2017
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The United States Department of Agriculture’s Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) has evolved from near open enrollment, to competitive enrollment, and now to a mixture of competitive and targeted enrollment. This paper reviews the history of the CRP and the evolution of its enrollment mechanism. I discuss the use of bid caps and the Environmental Benefits Index bid ranking mechanism in the “general” CRP; and the use of highly targeted, but non-competitive, “continuous” CRP. Possible challenges of these designs are discussed, and alternative auction mechanisms are considered that could be more cost effective.

Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

Hellerstein, Daniel M.


Land Use Policy is an international and interdisciplinary journal concerned with the social, economic, political, legal, physical and planning aspects of urban and rural land use. It provides a forum for the exchange of ideas and information from the diverse range of disciplines and interest groups which must be combined to formulate effective land use policies.

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